Essential Crafter

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There was a time when if you wanted to learn how to do something, especially a trade, you found the person with the most knowledge and you apprenticed under them. Today that generally doesn’t happen. Many learn from family members, a father or mother, older sibling and the such, I wonder just how much of that goes on these days with both parents working and kids being raised in daycare… but I digress.

Back to my point about learning how to do new things, or in this case, old things, older methods of doing, building, creating, ways that are being lost with every grandfather and grandmother who passes from this world. Fortunately there is still a source of information, while not as good as hands on learning, this is a pretty good substitute, especially if you already posses a basic set of skills. Anyone with a computer, laptop or smartphone and an internet connection can tap this source, it’s YouTube.

PB turned me on to a particular YouTube channel, he refers  to himself as the Essential Crafter. His channel features a little of everything, from woodworking to metalsmithing, safety and the such. I will say that he has caught PB attention for the moment. Here are a few of his videos, watch and enjoy! Let me know who your favorite YouTube’ers are 🙂

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Lumber cost are up about 30% so far compared to July.

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Lumber costs are going up and I talked to a cashier at Home Depot and she says the store is having trouble finding suppliers for lumber.  While I don’t like paying higher prices , the pressure treated boards I bought seem to be of better quality.  Much less warping and bows in the 2x4s overall.  Picking out lumber was much quicker compared to July 2017.  Of course fire wood racks don’t need the highest quality lumber but it is nice that paying a higher price also includes a better quality of lumber.

Speaking of Home Depot, I saw a story about many of our young people are clueless about how to use a tape measure for simple projects.  I can just imagine how Millennials are clueless about using basic power tools….   We have failed this generation!  If you know basic home economics or are a handyman this might be a great opportunity for a “side gig job” to help those kids around the house.  Honestly, Home Depot is putting out classes on how to mow a lawn!  While Idaho kid have not learned this level of helplessness. I know that young people have helped me out for the use of tools to jobs around their homes or apartments.  Many of these kids want to be self-reliant they just don’t know how to do it!  They see failure as a bad thing, rather than something to embrace as part of the learning process.  Learning what not to do is as important part of learning what to do in the future.

I’m learning that on the garden. I thought about adding fencing and a lot of other thing but what I need is a taller (18-24 inch) raised bed that is easy to easy to weed and is pet proof for my little digger dog.  Why build a fence when you could put that money into taller raise garden beds the critters can’t get into in the first place?  Plus taller beds are easier to weed, so it is a WIN/ WIN.

Thinking “outside the box” is a critical skill!  I think I’m pretty good at it, but even I have many moments of why didn’t I think of that….?  Also remember that if you always seek doing things perfectly you will never find that “good enough” quite often moves you forward to perfect.  Gosh if I always waited till things are “perfect” I’d never get anything done.  I can’t speak for others but I tend to learn best by failure.  So I seek out failure and then work my way towards perfection.

Survival Gear Review: The Rolex Deepsea Watch

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Best Survival Watch

In the opening events of one the many apocalyptic fiction books I’ve read there was a scene where a woman’s Rolex_Deepsea_SHTF_watchRolex stopped due to the EMP. My first thought was she must have had a counterfeit watch with a quartz movement. All real Rolex watches have a mechanical movement. Not an electrical circuit, battery or microchip in sight. In reality, Rolex watches have been a go-to timepiece globally for special ops boys and girls and tough guys for half a century, especially SEALs and other big guns. I remember my dive instructor loved to tell the story about watching his Rolex Submariner go flying off his wrist while he was lobbing grenades in Vietnam. Must have been left-handed was my first thought.

By Doc Montana, a Contributing Author to SHTFBlog and SurvivalCache.com

The Apocalypse Watch

In the field of survival, especially that where a significant amount of prediction is needed, it is often fun to review those pieces of kit that might be beyond the esoteric. Such as a $12,000+ watch for example. So here we go. A review of what might be the world’s toughest EMP-proof watch. And a slightly out-of-reach survival item for the average prepper. But there are some lessons to be learned here that can apply to more affordable survival watches.

Also Read: 5 Things Cheap Things That Can Get You Killed

The Road Less Traveled

Narrowing down the possible candidates for tough watches will first eliminate all electronic movements such Roles_Sea_Dweller_Deep_Sea_faceas those of the quartz variety. The next cutoff is easily made by chopping out all the watches that don’t suggest at least 100 meters of water resistance. But making that cut means little since the tougher watches will leave a 100m watch in the dust when it comes to pressure testing.

The next limit will be of case material. Stainless steel is an obvious candidate, but titanium is worth considering. Those cases of carbon fiber and super-plastics are few if any when it comes to watch movements that won’t be affected by electromagnetic pulses. Plus synthetic watch cases are quite limited in their pressure rating due to the nature of the flexible materials.

And the final easy cut is that only watches in production and are accessible will be considered. The custom makes and those of a highly limited run are not of much good if you can’t ever buy one.  So when considering the above limitations, a single category rises to the top: stainless steel case automatic movement dive watches. And the undisputed king of that particular category is the Rolex Deepsea Sea Dweller. Of course the Rolex DSSD, as it’s nicknamed, is a massive watch, nearly half a pound in weight, 1.7 centimeters thick and a five-figure price tag.

Related: Pathfinder Solar Watch Review

But the good news is that the Rolex Deepsea has a rather amazing toughness and depth rating. Not the 100 meters common to most sports watches, nor 200m that’s a minimum of sport diving watches. And not the 1000m of the famous Rolex Submariner. Or even the 4000 foot rating of the Sea Dweller. No, instead the Rolex Deepsea will survive just fine at 12,800 feet underwater! The Rolex Deepsea is like a Rolex Sea Dweller on steroids, which in turn the Sea Dweller is a Submariner on steroids, and the Submariner is a dive watch on steroids, and dive watches are sports watches on steroids, and sports watches are dress watches on steroids. To appreciate the Deepsea, you need to study the absurd amount of technology and engineering that goes a hyperdive watch.

Tough Guys

Sure the Hublot Oceanographic 4000 was the first watch to break the 4000 meter pressure barrier, but its best shtf watchlimited run of 1000 titanium pieces and 500 carbon fiber ones keeps it off our list since you can’t walk into a store and buy one. Plus, a little known fact about the Rolex Deepsea is that it actually passed pressure testing of 4,875m or almost 16,000 feet in order to meet the ISO 6425 Divers’ Watches Standard since the design must account for a 25% margin of error. This fact launched Rolex back into the top spot of production watch’ depth ratings. But of course when it comes to one-offs, Rolex does have the world record for watch depth with its Rolex Deepsea Challenge and a successful depth of 35,787 feet. If you were able to wear such a watch, you could count on it surviving 10 full-sized SUVs driving over your wrist at the same time. So like all these exercises in mechanical toughness during survival situations, there won’t be a human around to witness it. At least a living one anyway.

Also Read: Survival Bicycling

Arguments abound on the internet as to whether or not a dive watch is the category of toughest watch. SomeThe Answer Water Bottle Filtration Solution 300x250 argue that a lightweight watch has better survival fitness due to it’s more nimble low mass and thinness. But that line of reasoning is from the perspective of avoiding conflicts, not running headfirst into them. The Deepsea is for when you cannot hide, cannot run, cannot avoid the dark side of survival. The watch body is a special ultra strong 904L stainless steel. The watch back is thick titanium. And the crystal separating the watch face from a Mad Max world is a full five millimeters of sapphire-hard sapphire crystal.

But clamping a half-pound watch to your wrist is not something for those lacking confidence. The Rolex Deepsea Sea Dweller is absolutely massive by watch popular standards. Well, almost. It is actually smaller than my first two Garmin GPS watches but not my third. And the Rolex Deepsea is smaller in diameter than my Suunto compass/altimeter watch, but the Rolex is more than three times its weight.

It’s Complicated

Each watch feature beyond hours and minutes is an additional complication in watch movement mechanics. Add a date and you get another complication. Chronographs add another as do alarms, months, moon phases, etc. The most complicated wristwatch has 33 complications so needless to say, its chance of surviving a rough date is like zero. The Rolex Deepsea has one complication beyond time…the date. Why this is important is due the fact that the more complications, the more chance of failure. As systems interact, a lesser system could take down a major system. If the point of wearing a watch is to know the time, then you certainly don’t want a 1000 year calendar complication to take down your important hourly notation.

Also Read: Are You Drinking Radio Active Water?

By adding a trendy three-dial chronograph on a watch, at least three more complications are added that are three more pathways for failure. Well, actually there are now way more than three since the complications interact and each interaction is also a point of failure that could take down the whole watch.

Keeping it Simple

The Rolex Deepsea has a uni-directional bezel that can note a specific position on the minute hand for an old-school way of locking in a starting time. It’s a tried and true dive timer that can only err towards safety.

The bracelet of the Rolex Deepsea has a few tricks up its sleeve as well. First, it is made of solid stainless steel core links adding strength, but also weight. The pins connecting them are overbuilt as well, and the clasp is reinforced including a micro adjustment Glidelock allowing for subtle changes in bracelet size necessary for an eight ounce watch. A feature will you definitely need when switching between a wrist of skin to one of dive suit neoprene on the fly.

Watch for the Apocalypse

I’ve had watch batteries die when on adventures. I’ve had watches break, and straps snap. I’ve even killed a Rolex_Deepsea_SHTF_watch_survivalquality watch in a washing machine. So having a mechanical auto-winding watch is my first choice after a solar powered dive watch. But the thought of wearing a $10k barter item on my wrist at all times is also something that crossed my mind.

The Rolex Deepsea is not the lightest, smallest nor cheapest mechanical analog watch on the planet. Not even close. But it is certainly one of the toughest. In fact, wearing a half pound of Rolex on my wrist is something I had to get used to,  and it is nothing I would ever change from now on. So when time no longer matters, the Rolex Deepsea is there for you. And it will be there when time matters again. Something to think about, right?

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Guide to Saving Tomato Seeds

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Guide to Saving Tomato Seeds From a distance dealing with tomato seeds may sound easy. First of all, are you saving seeds or are you buying each year. Take my word for it. There is a sense satisfaction that is hard to quantify when you are standing in a productive garden that is made entirely of …

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Multirole Armored Robot for Infantry Announced by BAE Systems

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Multirole Armored Robot for Infantry Announced by BAE Systems The age of robots is upon us. It didn’t come with a bang and it didn’t bring hordes of gun totting terminators to our ranks. Still, there is no denying that the age of robots is here. This article is just another example of how these robots …

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The post Multirole Armored Robot for Infantry Announced by BAE Systems appeared first on SHTF Prepping & Homesteading Central.

Conflicted: Gangs and Innocents – What Would You Do?

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Conflicted is a Survival Card Game.  Each card in the deck has a scenario that will stretch how you would respond in an SHTF situation.  What would you do?  Leave your thoughts in the comment section below!

SCENARIO – You were told by your scouts that a gang in a large caravan is headed your way and your community leaders identify a choke point where you could easily kill them all.  It is well known that the gang travels with women and children, and to ambush them would mean the death of innocents for sure.  Your camp would be overwhelmed if you let them through due to their large numbers. Would you sacrifice their innocent in order to save yours?

Don’t forget to leave your thoughts in the comments below.

If you are interested in purchasing your own Conflicted deck – CLICK HERE.

 

 

 

Peace,
Todd

EDC Sun glasses

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Wiley

Wiley X Slay Sunglasses, given to a good friend a long time ago.

Message:

In 2014 you recommended WileyX Revolver Sun glasses, so I got 2 that I used for 2 years, but I lost the first and broke the second through abuse.

I am curious if there is a better kind of sun glasses for 2017 ? Now that you are back in a sunny country, I guess you are using more your glasses ? A new type, technology or brand you would recommend?

I used my glasses daily and sometimes even at night, as I felt like I lost some visibility but still got all the advantages of the glasses: Protection from wind, dust, random objects, and just psy advantage over people.

-Sam

.

Hey Sam,

Wow, you went through two Revolvrs? I’m still on my original pair and I’m using them everyday, every time I’m driving or walking.

You know, I was thinking about getting a spare pair in case I broke them. The great thing about the Revolvrs is the fantastic field of view you get.
They don’t seem to be selling them any more though so after some research, reading reviews and such I placed and order for these. They are Wiley X Ops Valor. I bought the Polarized version which reduces glare. Of course they have the 100% UV protection, impact resistance and all that good stuff. These can also use different lenses if you need clear or red ones.

Wiley X Men’s Ops Valor Polarized Grey Matte Sunglasses $83.22

I’ll see about trying them out and letting you guys know how I like them after some use.

FerFAL

Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”

EDC Sun glasses

Wiley

Wiley X Slay Sunglasses, given to a good friend a long time ago.

Message:

In 2014 you recommended WileyX Revolver Sun glasses, so I got 2 that I used for 2 years, but I lost the first and broke the second through abuse.

I am curious if there is a better kind of sun glasses for 2017 ? Now that you are back in a sunny country, I guess you are using more your glasses ? A new type, technology or brand you would recommend?

I used my glasses daily and sometimes even at night, as I felt like I lost some visibility but still got all the advantages of the glasses: Protection from wind, dust, random objects, and just psy advantage over people.

-Sam

.

Hey Sam,

Wow, you went through two Revolvrs? I’m still on my original pair and I’m using them everyday, every time I’m driving or walking.

You know, I was thinking about getting a spare pair in case I broke them. The great thing about the Revolvrs is the fantastic field of view you get.
They don’t seem to be selling them any more though so after some research, reading reviews and such I placed and order for these. They are Wiley X Ops Valor. I bought the Polarized version which reduces glare. Of course they have the 100% UV protection, impact resistance and all that good stuff. These can also use different lenses if you need clear or red ones.

Wiley X Men’s Ops Valor Polarized Grey Matte Sunglasses $83.22

I’ll see about trying them out and letting you guys know how I like them after some use.

FerFAL

Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”

Top Five .300 Winchester Magnum Rifles

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For quite a few reasons, .300 Win Mag is an extremely popular rifle round. As the name might suggest, it was developed by Winchester. It was first introduced in the early 1960s. The name might also suggest that it is a magnum cartridge, which is true, as the cartridge was derived from .375 Holland & Holland cartridges. It is popular in a few different niches. It’s popular for target shooters because it is one of the most accurate cartridges, and can handle long distances extremely well. It is one of the flattest shooting projectiles available.

Quick Navigation

  A. 300 Win Mag Specs
  B. Choosing a 300 Win Mag Rifle
  C. The Top 5 300 Rifles
    
1. Model 70
    
2. Mark V Ultra
    
3. X-Bolt Stainless
    
4. 110BA Stealth
    
5. Thompson/Center Compass

 

The round is popular among hunters because of the excellent combination of long range ability and a larger projectile. Various militaries and law enforcement agencies use it for snipers. The projectile is .30 inches in diameter, and the projectiles are available from 110-250 grains. This wide variety of projectile sizes available is another reason that the cartridge is so popular. The cartridge outperforms most of the competition in terms of ballistics. 

A. 300 Win Mag Specs

While some of the more modern cartridges have begun to outperform .300 Win Mag, it has retained its popularity because of the number of available weapons and how affordable the ammunition is. It is also one of the most popular rounds for reloading, due to the number of projectiles and amount of brass available. Generally speaking it is faster than .308 Winchester, and maintains its velocity over distance better. This results in a high energy projectile that is excellent for hunting medium to large game.

B. How to Choose the Right Rifle

When looking to buy a .300 Win Mag rifle, there are a few factors to keep in mind. They basically boil down to what your uses for the rifle will be. However, to help point you in the right direction, we’ve identified a few key features.

  • How important is accuracy to you? Are you looking for a hunting rifle or a precision long range rifle?
  • Are you planning on taking this rifle on any mountain hikes in search of that trophy kill?
  • Goes along with the weight. Will a long rifle be a burden for you?
  • If you are looking for a precision rifle, you probably need to be prepared to spend more money than on a hunting rifle.
  • How important is the corrosion resistance and resistance to the elements for you?

Looking for a .300 Win Mag rifle can be overwhelming, as there are many options available. We have tried to touch on the best .300 Win Mag rifles across the whole range of available weapons to help give you an idea.

Winchester Model 70 Super Grade | Wikipedia Creative Commons licenses

 C. Top 5 .300 Win Mag Rifles

Rifle Top Feature MSRP
1.       Winchester Model 70 Super Grade Quality $1479
2.       Weatherby Mark V Ultra Lightweight Accuracy $2300
3.       Browning X-Bolt Stainless Stalker Durability $1179
4.       Savage Arms 110BA Stealth Evolution Tactically styled $1999
5.       Thompson/Center Compass Price $399

 

  1. Winchester Model 70 Super Grade

The first rifle on our list of best .300 Win Mag rifles is the Model 70 Super Grade from Winchester. This bolt action rifle is extremely sleek looking, with classic walnut styling with an ebony forearm tip. The barrel has a polished blue finish, and the wood parts have a satin finish. The two-tone walnut is very aesthetically pleasing. The weapon has a 26 inch barrel, weighs 8.5 pounds, and has a 3 round magazine capacity.

The pros of this weapon are the looks, the accuracy, and the reliability. The accuracy of the weapon comes from a few things. First, the hammer forged barrel is free floated. Second, the MOA trigger system allows for a very precise trigger pull. Third, the steel receiver has an integral recoil lug that is bedded in the front and rear to prevent the bolt from shifting at all. Last, the stock has a solid steel piece for added rigidness. All of these factors increase the accuracy of the weapon. The reliability comes from the steel receiver and the controlled round feeding and extracting mechanisms.

The cons of this weapon are the price, limited magazine capacity, and the weight. This is not the most expensive on our list, but it is still pricy. However, it is also the highest quality weapon on the list. It is also a very heavy weapon, which is something to consider if you are looking for a hunting rifle. As far as uses go, it would excel in any role, but the weight and longer barrel may limit its uses to target shooting and hunts where you don’t have to travel far.

 

Suggested Retail Price: $1479

Top Features:

  1. As mentioned before, multiple factors add into the accuracy.
  2. Steel receiver, controlled round feeding and extracting.
  3. Pre drilled and tapped for scope mounts.
  4. Sleek looking.
  5. High quality weapon at a reasonable price.

 

  1. Weatherby Mark V Ultra Lightweight

Next up is another bolt action rifle. The Mark V Ultra Lightweight variant is one of Weatherby’s best rifles. As with all Weatherby weapons, this rifle is extremely high quality and very accurate. The barrel is 24 inches long, the weapon weighs 6.75 pounds, and has a 3 round magazine capacity. Due to the extreme light weight and accuracy, this is the best .300 Win Mag rifle for hunting. If you are looking for a precision rifle, we highly recommend checking out some of the other variants of the Mark V or some other weapons made by Weatherby, although the Ultra Lightweight is accurate enough to work in this capacity.

The pros of this weapon are the accuracy, light weight, and the smooth action. The accuracy comes from the hand lapped barrel and the excellent LXX trigger. The LXX trigger is extremely precisely made, and offers a wider face for more contact between your finger and the trigger. The trigger is also completely adjustable, all the way down to 2.5 pounds. The LXX trigger goes a long way in increasing the accuracy of the firearm as a whole. The light weight comes from the lighter 6 lug action, composite stock, and a slightly smaller forearm.

The cons of this weapon are the smaller grip, limited magazine capacity, and the price. The smaller grip helps a lot in decreasing the weight, but takes a little getting used to. While this is one of the highest quality rifles on our list, it is also the most expensive.

 

Suggested Retail Price: $2300

Top Features:

  1. Weatherby guarantees .99 inch groups at 100 yards when using their ammunition.
  2. LXX trigger. Increases the accuracy, but is also an excellent trigger. One of the best on the market.
  3. Stainless steel barrel and composite stock will be resistant to the elements.
  4. Extremely strong action.

 

  1. Browning X-Bolt Stainless Stalker

The Stainless Stalker is one of the variants of Browning’s X-Bolt rifle. They are all high quality firearms, but the Stainless Stalker has some added features that make it an excellent option as a hunting rifle. The rifle has a 26 inch barrel, weighs just under 7 pounds, and has a 3 round magazine capacity. While other variants of the X-Bolt may function better in other roles, the Stainless Stalker is another one of the best .300 Win Mag rifles for hunting.

The pros of this weapon are the durability, adjustable trigger, short throw bolt, and reliability. The durability comes from the stainless steel barrel, bolt, and receiver paired with a composite stock coated in Dura-Touch Armor Coating. This makes the weapon extremely resistant to the elements. Additional grip has been added to the forearm in order to allow for plenty of grip strength in adverse conditions. The adjustable trigger makes the weapon slightly more accurate, and the short throw bolt allows you to chamber the next round and fire quicker.

The cons of this weapon are that it is not as accurate as some of the others and has a limited magazine capacity. However, this is an excellent rifle for hunting.

 

Suggested Retail Price: $1179

Top Features:

  1. Stainless steel parts and composite stock.
  2. Adjustable trigger.
  3. Pre drilled and tapped for scope mounts.
  4. Light weight. Not as light as the Mark V Ultra Lightweight, but still a manageable weight.
  5. Comfortable pad that absorbs recoil well.
  6. Stainless steel parts increase the reliability significantly.

 

  1. Savage Arms 110BA Stealth Evolution

 

 

While Savage Arms is generally known for their affordably priced bolt action rifles, the 110BA Stealth Evolution is cut from a different cloth. This is still a reliable bolt action rifle, but has been given a modern, tactical look. It has an AR-15 style handguard with multiple picatinny rails to go along with a fully adjustable stock. It also has a detachable box magazine that has a 5 round capacity. It has a 24 inch barrel and weighs around 7 pounds. With a little work, this could function well as a precision rifle. In our opinion, it is the best .300 Win Mag rifle for target shooting. It could be used for hunting, but there are better options out there.

The pros of this weapon are the picatinny rails, adjustable trigger, a manageable weight, and the modernized look. The picatinny rails allow you to mount any number of accessories on the rifle. It also allows you to use a wider variety of scopes and optics. Savage Arms’ AccuTrigger is fully adjustable, and greatly increases the accuracy of the rifle. Adjusting the trigger pull will go a long way in increasing your shot. The look of this weapon is nice, but some of the features that come along with it are even nicer. For example, the adjustable stock, pistol style grip, and the detachable box magazine look nice, but also add a lot to the weapon.

The pros of this weapon are limited to mostly the cost. As mentioned, this is a good frame to start off, but to make a competitive rifle, it may take a little work. As far as the cost, this is a quality rifle, but given the reputation of Savage Arms, some people will struggle to pay this for one of their rifles.

 

Suggested Retail Price: $1999

Top Features:

  1. Increased magazine capacity. Dependent on your use for the weapon, this may be a nice feature for you.
  2. Modern look and features that go along with it.
  3. Increases the accuracy of the weapon.
  4. Reliable and smooth action.

 

  1. Thompson/Center Compass

The last entry on our list of best .300 Win Mag rifles is the Compass from Thompson/Center. While this is an extremely affordably priced and basic rifle, there are also some great features to see at this price point. The rifle has a 24 inch barrel, weighs 7.5 pounds, and has a 4 round magazine capacity. Due to some of the added features, this is the best .300 Win Mag rifle for the price. It would function well as a hunting rifle, but could also be the starting point for an entry level precision rifle.

The pros of this weapon are the short pull, increased magazine capacity, adjustable trigger, and the perice. This weapon actually has one of the shortest pulls on our list, which is surprising in such an affordably priced weapon. Another surprise for an affordably priced weapon is the adjustable trigger. Usually this comes at an added cost. Having the extra round that most of the other rifles don’t have is another plus.

The cons of this weapon are hard to complain about considering the price. However, this wasn’t the most accurate rifle on the list, and is one of the heavier ones.

 

Suggested Retail Price: $399

Top Features:

  1. Hard to beat this price, especially given some of the added features.
  2. Adjustable trigger. You usually don’t see an adjustable trigger at this price.
  3. Grip and stock. The composite grip and stock offer plenty of grip strength and are resistant to the elements.
  4. As with most bolt actions, this weapon is smooth and reliable, shot after shot.

 

Conclusion
As you can see, there are a plethora of options available for .300 Win Mag rifles. While there are many factors to consider, thinking about your use for the weapon will help you narrow down which features are important to you. Once you’ve identified that, the list of best rifles for you will start to shrink.

If you’re looking for a hunting rifle, the Weatherby Mark V Ultra Lightweight is an excellent option. If you’re looking for an overall excellent quality weapon, the Winchester Model 70 Super Grade is definitely something to look into. However, if you are on a tighter budget, the Thompson/Center Compass is probably what you’re going to want. No matter which weapon you choose, .300 Win Mag is an excellent cartridge, and you will likely be happy with your purchase. Hopefully our list of best .300 Win Mag rifles has helped narrow down your search for you.

The post Top Five .300 Winchester Magnum Rifles appeared first on Geek Prepper.

Supporting Hormones with Essential Oils

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You feel completely drained of energy each day -You put everyone else’s needs ahead of your own -You know that health is important, but you are not creating the time for it -You are beginning to lose passion for things that you once enjoyed -You are concerned about aging, but you feel this is inevitable -You have the burning desire to look and feel better than you do right now.

Now, let’s start the educational process together because I am driven to give you power by offering you knowledge. I shared this article earlier, but just so it is handy. I want to focus on one paragraph that I believe captures the essence of this potential health challenge… “It’s a simple fact: hormones get blamed for a lot— bad moods, aggressive moments, even sad days. Deserved or not, it is clear hormones play a significant role in many of the body’s functions. Because hormones affect such a wide range of physiological processes, it is important to maintain hormonal balance. Hormone change can cause a wide variety of physical and emotional symptoms. Estrogen and progesterone are the main steroidal hormones that affect women’s health. Each of these hormones has a broad scope of functions that extend far beyond reproductive health. In fact, female sex hormones influence energy levels, sleep cycle, brain function, bone health, heart health, weight management, and many other factors.” Hormones often represent the gateway to many health conditions which is why prevention in this area could be the catalyst for a significantly better quality of life. Women can experience hormonal imbalance at any stage in their lives. It’s just your body’s way of asking for help.

What Are Hormones and What Do They Do? Hormones are special chemical messengers in the body that are created in the endocrine glands. These messengers control most major bodily functions, from simple basic needs like hunger to complex systems like reproduction, and even the emotions and mood. The body has many different hormones, but certain types have a bigger role to play in the body’s health and well-being. Understanding these roles is important for those looking to protect and manage their health. For women, estrogen (or estradiol) is the main sex hormone. It causes puberty, prepares the body and uterus for pregnancy, and regulates the menstrual cycle. During menopause, estrogen level changes cause many of the uncomfortable symptoms women experience. Learn more at http://www.hormone.org

You really do not have to suffer and that is why I am sharing with you now. Many women reach a point in their lives and start to believe “When I age, my beauty and healthy will deteriorate.” This is caused by societal ignorance and my motivation is to break it and help rewrite your story with you. Outside of a diet filled with high quality food choices and regular exercise, dōTERRA® has two products which are specific for women and will offer the potential support and prevention you need.

doTERRA Women Phytoestrogen Lifetime Complex is a blend of natural plant extracts that support hormone balance throughout the different phases of a woman’s life.* Beginning as a young adult, almost every function of a woman’s body is controlled by hormones. A balance of normal hormone levels will influence a woman’s good health and emotional well-being from her early teens to her transition through menopause. doTERRA Women Phytoestrogen Lifetime Complex is a blend of standardized plant phytoestrogens that support hormone balance gently and naturally.* It also includes concentrated flax seed lignans to promote healthy metabolism.* Eating right, exercising, and maintaining hormonal balance can help reduce uncomfortable issues associated with PMS and the transition through menopause, and will provide additional support for healthy bones, heart, breast tissue, and other body structures and function as a woman ages.*

dōTERRA® ClaryCalm® is a proprietary blend designed to provide a soothing effect during a woman’s menstrual cycle, ClaryCalm offers cooling effects for the skin and balance for emotions. Uses -During your menstrual cycle, apply to abdomen to experience a soothing and calming massage. -During moments of heat, apply to the skin for a cooling, soothing effect. -Diffuse for a calming aroma that helps soothe heightened emotions. Primary Benefits -Provides a soothing and calming effect during a woman’s menstrual cycle -Calming aroma helps soothe and balance heightened emotions. -Helps balance mood throughout the month

Come back next week for another post about using essential oils to support your hormones.

Sign up for the Essential Oil E-course HERE
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*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

The post Supporting Hormones with Essential Oils appeared first on Mama Kautz.

Wildfire Defense

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California wildfire

California wildfire

Every year, wildfires race throughout the western part of the country, causing property destruction and loss of life. So far, 21 people have died in the latest series of fires in Northern California with almost 500 still missing; 2000 buildings have been destroyed.

I’ve reported on these events and made recommendations to those living in areas at risk, but the topic was made personal to me in 2016 when my home in Gatlinburg, Tennessee barely avoided being burnt to the foundation by the whims of the winds.

100 other homes on the mountain weren’t so lucky. I’ve driven by areas months that look like a nuclear winter is in progress. The still-breathtaking views bear the scars of the conflagration and will for years to come. A total of over 2000 building were destroyed or damaged here, with 14 people killed and 134 injured.

(ASIDE: As with many other wildfires, this one was caused by humans. Two teenagers were initially arrested for aggravated arson but charges were later dropped. Apparently, if the fire was started in the National Park, it excluded state jurisdiction from prosecuting wrongdoers. Really? Who, then, does have jurisdiction? Smokey The Bear?)

Has Jurisdiction in National Park Fires

Has jurisdiction in National Park arson cases

As with the Tennessee wildfire, high winds are spreading flames throughout Northern California. Mandatory evacuations are being ordered in various areas and conditions are only worsening as time passes. The fire is traveling so fast that people, thinking their area was safe, woke up inhaling smoke and hitting the road in a panic. One couple escaped being burned by jumping into their pool.

Property vs. Personal Defense

What can you do in the face of an irresistible force like a wildfire? How can you protect your property (and yourself) from being devastated by fire?

Two main principles for property defense are

1) vegetation management

2) creating a defensible space.

It should be noted that property defense is not the same as personal defense. The main principles for personal defense in the face of a wildfire are “get out of Dodge”, “hit the road, Jack”, and “skedaddle”.

Get out of Dodge

Get out of Dodge

But let’s talk about how you can prepare your property in advance to have a shot at surviving a wildfire. The first principle of wildfire preparedness is what we call “vegetation management“. With vegetation management, the key is to direct fires away from your house. There are several ways to accomplish this, all of which require vigilance and regular maintenance.

You’ll want to clean up dead wood and leaf piles lying within 30 feet of your building structure. Pay special attention to clearing off the roof and gutters. Although you may have spent time and money putting lush landscaping around your home, you may have to choose: Do you want attractive, flammable plants next to your structure or do you want fire protection?

You’ll want to thin out those thick canopied trees near your house, making sure that no two canopies touch each other. Any trees within 50 feet on flatland, or 200 feet if downhill from your retreat need to be thinned, so that you’re pruning branches off below 10-12 feet high, and separating them by 10-20 feet. No tree should overhang the roof. Also, eliminate all shrubs at the base of the trunks. Pick up pruned branches and dispose of safely away from the building.

Lawns and gardens should be well-hydrated; collect lawn cuttings and other debris that could be used as fuel by the fire. If water is limited, keep dry lawns cut back as much as possible. Of course, preparedness folk don’t have that much use for lawns, anyway; better to use the land for vegetable and herb gardens.

The second principle of property wildfire protection is “the defensible space“. A defensible space is an area around a structure where wood and vegetation are treated, cleared, or reduced to slow the spread of flames towards a structure. Having a defensible space will also provide room to work for those fighting the fire.

spot fires are started by windy conditions

spot fires are started by windy conditions

The amount of defensible space you’ll need depends on whether you’re on flat land or on a steep slope. Flatland fires spread more slowly than a fire on a slope (hot air and flames rise). A fire on a steep slope with wind blowing uphill spreads fast and produces “spot fires“. These are small fires that ignite vegetation ahead of the main burn, due to small bits of burning debris in the air. That’s why the area of vegetation management is larger, as mentioned above, if downhill of your home.

Woodpiles and other flammables should be located at least 20-30 feet away from structures. Gardening tools should be kept in sheds, and those sheds should be at a distance from the home.  Concrete walkways and perimeter walls may be helpful in impeding the progress of the fire.

Attic and other vents should be covered with screening to prevent small embers from entering the structure. Additional strategies for the home can be found at firewise.org.

Of course, once you have created a defensible space (well before a fire hits the area), the natural inclination is to want to, well, defend it. Unfortunately, you have to remember that you’ll be in the middle of a lot of heat and smoke.

Therefore, it wise to follow the principles of personal defense for wildfires and get out of Dodge if there’s a safe way to leave. Your family’s lives may depend on it. If you’re hitting the road, have a bag already packed with food, water, extra clothes, batteries, flashlights, and more. Don’t forget to bring your cell phone, any important papers you might need, and some cash.

As an added precaution, make sure you shut off any air conditioning system that draws air into the house from outside. Turn off all your appliances, close all your windows and lock all your doors. Like any other emergency, you should have some form of communication system established with your loved ones in case you’re not together. Texts require less bandwidth than voice calls.

Masks are handy items to have in a wildfire

Masks are useful items in a wildfire

Medical kits should contain masks, eye and hand protection, burn ointment (aloe vera is a natural alternative) and non-stick dressings. Specialized burn dressings are available that incorporate both. Gauze rolls and medical tape can be used for additional coverage. Round out your kit with scissors, cold packs, and some eyewash (smoke is a major irritant to the eyes).

If your routes of vehicular escape are blocked, you may have to leave by foot. If so, make sure you’re dressed in long pants, sleeves, and heavy boots. A wool blanket is very helpful as an additional outside layer because wool is relatively fire-resistant. Some people think it’s a good idea to wet the blanket first: Don’t. Wet materials transfer heat much faster than dry materials and will cause more severe burns.

If you must stay inside a building, retreat to the side farthest from the fire and with the least number of windows (windows transfer heat to the inside). Stay there unless you have to leave due to smoke or the building catching fire. If that’s the case, wrap yourself in the blanket, leaving only your eyes uncovered.

smoke inhalation is a common cause of death in wildfires

smoke inhalation is a common cause of death in wildfires

You may have trouble breathing because of the smoke. In that instance, stay low and crawl out of the building. There’s less smoke and heat the lower you go. Keep your face down towards the floor. This will help protect your airway, which is very important. You can recover from burns on your skin, but not from major burns in your lungs.

No one is immune to the risk for wildfires, hurricanes, tornadoes, and other disasters. You might not experience a tsunami in Nebraska, but each area has its own issues. We must all be prepared for disasters if we’re going to be resilient in the face of adversity.

Joe Alton MD

Joe Alton MD

Joe Alton MD

Find out more about wildfire safety and much more with the Third Edition of the Survival Medicine Handbook: The Essential Guide for When Medical Help is Not on the Way, 2017 winner of the Book Excellence Award in the medical category.

Plus, don’t forget to check out Nurse Amy’s entire line of kits and supplies at store.doomandbloom.net.

 

How to Render Tallow

As someone that has rendered quite a bit of lard over the years I was curious about rendering tallow from beef fat so when we got our pork fat for rendering this year we also purchased 30 lbs of beef fat from a local producer of grass fed beef. Hickory Nut Gap Farm was luckily. . . Read More

Top 5 Tips To Picking The Perfect Hiking Shoes

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Hiking Shoes

Stepping through the forested areas on a thorough hike gets all the more elating with every step taken. But here is a question for your feet, are they as excited as you are? Your feet go up against the rigorous task of mountain climbing, so it’s vital that they have the correct protection and padding.

Picking hiking shoes isn’t generally simple. From style to size, one can choose from a variety of options, and what feels great in the store still requires time to soften up before your hiking excursion. Check out your top picked tips to consider in order to pick the right shoes for your outdoor and hiking adventure.

#Tip 1: Translate the Styles

Just like sneakers, hiking shoes are also made for particular sorts of trekking. Do you spend most of your time on the mountain or at home or are you just a casual hiker? Knowing the exact type of hiker that you are, will go a long way in determining which hiking shoes will best suit your requirements.

What will you be doing in this shoes, and by this, it isn’t just hiking, but you have to be specific of the kind of hiking you will be doing. On the off chance that you are doing overnight hikes, a lot will be carried on your back, so it’s better for you to go for a more serious pair of shoes, one with an ankle support and a stiffer sole.

Will you hike the taller Maine Mountains, which have a tendency to be extremely rough? Once more, you may need a boot with an ankle support and a stiffer sole. Or, then again will you go on mostly simple trails? Assuming this is the case, you might need to pick a low profile boot that is more adaptable, enabling you to take comfortable steps. Remember the motive of buying these shoes while shopping.

#Tip 2: Consider the material

With regards to hiking shoes, the material is of huge significance. A wrong fabric could make your feet uncomfortable, cramped, and hot. Find the proper material for extreme trail comfort. Synthetics materials are frequently polyester and nylon. They are anything but difficult to break in, feel light, and also dry up quickly when wet, though, less water resistant.

Split-grain leather is often made with half leather synthetics, this material is also extremely breathable. Be that as it may, it is not as water resistant as full-grain leather. Sturdiness is additionally on the lower end. Furthermore, most mountaineering shoes are composed of full-grain leather. It’s an exceptionally tough material, ideal for rigorous hikes aiming to cross the shaky landscape. Then again, this material is very heavy and less breathable.

#Tip 3: Do you want your shoes to have a high, mid or low ankle?

Some people think high-ankle shoes are dorky. Possibly they are, yet you’ve got to like them. Why? Because it’s good for people with a condition called wobbly ankles. As such, they tend to turn their ankles effortlessly. At any rate, it’s the best choice to wear high-ankle shoes when hiking on uneven terrain. They bolster ankles better, plain and basic. You can wear high-ankle shoes when hiking any kind of mountain or fairly difficult trail. Then again, you can wear low-ankle shoes or even hiking sandals on the easier trail. You know how you can balance your ankle. Make the right decision for you.

#Tip 4: Know your size

It’s good to have the measurement of your foot’s length, width, and arc length before embarking on your shopping trip. Foot volume is another key to the right fit, must be evaluated by a pro at a store. You can double check your foot length by bringing out the insoles of the shoes and stand on them; there should be a thumb’s width of space in between the end of the insoles and your longest toe.

#Tip 5: Try on shoes at the end of the day

Your feet usually swell a bit amid the day’s exercises and will be at their biggest at that point. This enables you to avoid purchasing shoes that are too small for your feet.

Conclusion

Picking the right hiking shoes could be cumbersome, however, after going through this post, you should be able to pick the right hiking shoes for you. Really the best activity is essentially strolling into a store and try on shoes. Bunches of shoes. Try not to be shy. Ask the store attendants questions. Who knows, you may simply find somebody who is as eager as you about finding you the right hiking shoes.

About the Author
Hi! I am Kevin Fleeman. I have a deep respect for nature and for the environment and we therefore take the sport of hunting and fishing very seriously.

Guest Author’s Website

The post Top 5 Tips To Picking The Perfect Hiking Shoes appeared first on American Preppers Network.

How Much Protein In Your Deep Pantry?

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While considering a preparedness plan for food procurement and storage you should know about protein requirements. It’s easy to store carbohydrates, but not so easy (and more expensive) to store some of the proteins.   What is protein? Protein is a macro nutrient necessary for the proper growth and function of the human body. Among other things, proteins are also the building blocks for muscles. We all need protein – in varying amounts – to live a healthy life. Proteins are part of every cell, tissue, and organ in our bodies and these body proteins are constantly being broken down

The post How Much Protein In Your Deep Pantry? appeared first on Modern Survival Blog.

Brass Monkey Weather is Here!

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Brass Monkey Weather is Here – What da ya Do? Host: Lynna… “A Preppers Path” Audio player provided! Sakes alive it’s already Brass Monkey Weather! Brrrrrrrrrrr only early October and the car thermometer says it’s 28 degrees! That’s not the coldest weather of course but not being ready for the crispness of fall it’s darn … Continue reading Brass Monkey Weather is Here!

The post Brass Monkey Weather is Here! appeared first on Prepper Broadcasting |Network.

Brass Monkey Weather is Here!

Brass Monkey Weather is Here – What da ya Do? Host: Lynna… “A Preppers Path” Audio player provided! Sakes alive it’s already Brass Monkey Weather! Brrrrrrrrrrr only early October and the car thermometer says it’s 28 degrees! That’s not the coldest weather of course but not being ready for the crispness of fall it’s darn … Continue reading Brass Monkey Weather is Here!

The post Brass Monkey Weather is Here! appeared first on Prepper Broadcasting |Network.

Your EDC Picks: Top Knives & Multi-Tools MTJS Readers Are Carrying

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Your EDC Picks: Top Knives & Multi-Tools MTJS Readers Are Carrying

Thank you guys so much for answering my question a few weeks back about which pocket knife you were currently EDC-ing. Made for a crazy cool read, especially since there were so many knives listed I didn’t even know existed. Some awesome discontinued knives in the list! With over 50 comments, and few knife repeats, […]

This is just the start of the post Your EDC Picks: Top Knives & Multi-Tools MTJS Readers Are Carrying. Continue reading and be sure to let us know what you think in the comments!


Your EDC Picks: Top Knives & Multi-Tools MTJS Readers Are Carrying, written by Elise Xavier, was created exclusively for readers of the survival blog More Than Just Surviving.

Your EDC Picks: Top Knives & Multi-Tools MTJS Readers Are Carrying

Your EDC Picks: Top Knives & Multi-Tools MTJS Readers Are Carrying

Thank you guys so much for answering my question a few weeks back about which pocket knife you were currently EDC-ing. Made for a crazy cool read, especially since there were so many knives listed I didn’t even know existed. Some awesome discontinued knives in the list! With over 50 comments, and few knife repeats, […]

This is just the start of the post Your EDC Picks: Top Knives & Multi-Tools MTJS Readers Are Carrying. Continue reading and be sure to let us know what you think in the comments!


Your EDC Picks: Top Knives & Multi-Tools MTJS Readers Are Carrying, written by Elise Xavier, was created exclusively for readers of the survival blog More Than Just Surviving.

Timeline Of A Collapse What To Expect | episode 166

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Timeline Of A Collapse What To Expect | episode 166
Timeline Of A Collapse What To Expect | episode 166

 

Timeline Of A Collapse What To Expect | episode 166

https://www.survivalpunk.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/10/collapse-timeline.mp3

Download

 

This week I talk about the timeline of a collapse. What you can expect to see during a collapse. 

I try to be as generic about the type of collapse as possible to make it as applicable as possible. 

Whatever causes the collapse in this podcast it begins with the lights going out. From there I talk about how bad things will get.

Dehydration will be a huge killer. Possible the number one reason for death. Even above violence. 

Having safe water to drink is not as tacticool as guns but will leave you just as dead. 

Proper sanitation and waste disposal is another big one. 

 

 

  • Timeline Of A Collapse 
  • Depends On the form the collapse takes
  • Power Goes Off 
  • Water and Natural Gas pumps stop
  • Mold Begins Growing
  • Trash Begins To Pile Up
  • Toilets Stop Flushing
  • Prices Skyrocket while money is still accepted
  • If the backup power doesn’t come on hospital patients die. 
  • Dehydration becomes a problem
  • Looting 
  • Many begin to run out of food
  • Disease runs rampant
  • Death Tolls Mount

 

Links

Luggable Loo

Life Straw

 

 

 

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The post Timeline Of A Collapse What To Expect | episode 166 appeared first on Survival Punk.

8 Health Benefits of Cloves

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Health Benefits of Clove

Dried Clove Buds

Dried Clove Buds

Our readers often ask us to comment on various natural remedies. Face it, medics can stockpile all the drugs they can, but if a disaster event lasts long enough, medicine and supplies will be expended. Unless society restabilizes pretty darn quickly, commercial medical items and drugs will be hard to find unless your retreat is the local hospital.

That leaves you with whatever’s in your back yard that might have medicinal benefits. Therefore, you’d be smart to start planting an herb garden in normal times. Once you get over the learning curve, you’ll figure out what plants do well in your grow zone. These plants will comprise your survival medicine cabinet.  Once you get through a good season, you can experiment a little with teas, tinctures, or other ways that plants are processed into medicines. Your ancestors did just that, and had this plant or that plant in the garden not because it was food necessarily, but to treat illnesses and injuries.

Many medicinal plants are herbs that are mostly used in cooking, but also have uses for the medic. Today, let’s talk about cloves.

Clove Tree

Clove Tree

Cloves, (syzygium aromaticum) are one of the spices native to Asia. You can find them in places like the Maluku islands in Indonesia, where it might have originated, but also in India, Pakistan, and even areas of East Africa. They are a popular spice used in a variety of ways in Asian cuisine. In fact, cloves form the basis of a lot of the food in a number of different nations.

Cloves have an interesting history. During the 13th and 14th centuries, they were transported all the way from Indonesia to pretty much all over the known world. I would think Marco Polo shipped some cloves to Italy and other European nations. During this time, cloves were very expensive, so much so that they were the subject of wars for monopoly over their production, distribution, and the islands where they came from. Dutch traders emerged victorious and held the Maluku islands for some time.

When we talk about natural plants, we usually talk about using leaves, roots or flowers, but with cloves, it’s the flower buds that are used as a spice and for most of its medicinal purposes. These look like miniature nails from your tool box. They are processed in a number of ways; for example, we use the essential oil in some of our kits.

Clove bud

Clove bud

Cloves are antioxidant powerhouses. Minerals in cloves include calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorous, potassium, sodium, and zinc. The vitamins found in them include vitamin C, thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, folate, vitamin B6, vitamin B12, vitamin A, vitamin E, vitamin D, and vitamin K. They are also a source of Omega-3 fatty acids (the good kind).

Cloves are reported to have many health benefits, some of which include providing aid in digestion, having antimicrobial properties, fighting against cancer, protecting the liver, boosting the immune system, controlling diabetes, preserving bone quality, as well as fighting against oral diseases and headaches, while also, at least the Chinese say, displaying aphrodisiac properties. Which takes me to, how do I know if cloves are effective against this problem or that problem? I’ll admit that hard scientific data is hard to come by, so you have to understand that the reports aren’t always proof, and effects may be very individual, some may receive these health benefits in full, others, not so much.

What makes Clove buds a useful part of your off-grid medicine cabinet? The health benefits include beneficial effects on pain and inflammation, but also a negative effect on bacterial, viruses, fungi, and more. Like many herbs, Clove have a number of different compounds that may have medical uses, but the most well-known is called “Eugenol”.

Here are eight benefits that cloves may impart to your off-grid patients:

  1. Pain relief: We supply clove oil in all our dental kits because of its anesthetic and antiseptic effect in damaged teeth. Mixing 2 drops of clove oil with some zinc oxide powder can produce improvised temporary cement, useful for lost fillings and other oral issues. It may also relieve gum discomfort, but beware of using too much or too often; it can cause irritation.
  2. Breath issues: It may be hard to distill oil, but teas are easy to make right from the garden (and after drying in many cases). Gargling some tea made with cloves is thought to be a great way to eliminate bad breath.
  3. Respiratory ailments: Clove in its various forms is reported to be helpful for respiratory system complaints due to antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, and expectorant effects. It’s been used for colds, sore throat, bronchitis, sinusitis, and more. Warm tea is a good way to access these benefits but better, perhaps, is adding clove oil to hot water and inhale steam.
  4. GI problems: Nausea and vomiting might be improved with direct inhalation of clove oil in a cloth. Mix some powdered clove buds with honey to decrease gas. It’s possible that cloves improve the production of digestive enzymes and help relax irritated intestinal lining, which might help stomach ache, diarrhea, and other GI discomforts.
  5. Ear infections: Clove has anesthetic and antimicrobial oral properties, but these also pertain to the ear canal. A combination of clove oil and sesame oil soaked in a cotton ball (best if warm) can relieve earache and treat infection. Alternatively, make an infusion with crushed cloves and olive oil, let sit for an hour, strain well, and put a few warm drops in the affected ear.
  6. Skin blemishes: Acne may be improved with Cloves due to its antibacterial effect. Mix clove oil with coconut oil (ratio 1:10) and apply to affected skin with a Q-tip two or three times daily until improved.
  7. Headaches: Due to it pain-relieving properties, massaging Clove oil mixed with coconut oil into the forehead or other area can relieve headache discomfort. Alternatively, place a few drops of clove oil on a warm cloth and apply to where the pain is.
  8. Joint Pain: Massaging aching joints with the above mixtures may work the same way on joint pain. Alternatively, a warm clove compress to the joints may be helpful.

It should be noted that clove oil is pretty strong stuff, and must be used sparingly. It can cause irritation, as mentioned above, but also has ill effects on the body’s cells when used excessively. It may also slow blood clotting, and, hence, not used prior to surgery. Having said that, used correctly in small amounts by diluting with carrier oils or liquids, clove oil is generally considered to be safe. You can expect whole dried clove buds to last 3-4 years if stored properly.

With clove oil and other natural plant oils, teas, tinctures, infusions, and balms, the quality of the product and medicinal benefits may vary due to a number of reasons. Soil conditions, seasonal temperatures, rainfall, and time of harvest are just some of the factors involved in determining the end product when it comes to herbal products. Many of these remedies also vary from individual to individual.

The off-grid or homestead medic should have a stockpile of commercial medicines, but also a sustainable supply of plants with medicinal properties for use in good times or bad. Use all the tools in the woodshed and you’ll be a more effective caregiver in austere settings.

Joe Alton

Dr. Alton

Joe Alton MD

Find out more about cloves, other natural remedies, and much more with the Third Edition of the Survival Medicine Handbook: The Essential Guide for When Medical Help is Not on the Way, 2017 winner of the Book Excellence Award in the medical category.

Plus, don’t forget to check out Nurse Amy’s entire line of kits and supplies at store.doomandbloom.net.

You’ll be glad you did!

 

8 Health Benefits of Cloves

Health Benefits of Clove

Dried Clove Buds

Dried Clove Buds

Our readers often ask us to comment on various natural remedies. Face it, medics can stockpile all the drugs they can, but if a disaster event lasts long enough, medicine and supplies will be expended. Unless society restabilizes pretty darn quickly, commercial medical items and drugs will be hard to find unless your retreat is the local hospital.

That leaves you with whatever’s in your back yard that might have medicinal benefits. Therefore, you’d be smart to start planting an herb garden in normal times. Once you get over the learning curve, you’ll figure out what plants do well in your grow zone. These plants will comprise your survival medicine cabinet.  Once you get through a good season, you can experiment a little with teas, tinctures, or other ways that plants are processed into medicines. Your ancestors did just that, and had this plant or that plant in the garden not because it was food necessarily, but to treat illnesses and injuries.

Many medicinal plants are herbs that are mostly used in cooking, but also have uses for the medic. Today, let’s talk about cloves.

Clove Tree

Clove Tree

Cloves, (syzygium aromaticum) are one of the spices native to Asia. You can find them in places like the Maluku islands in Indonesia, where it might have originated, but also in India, Pakistan, and even areas of East Africa. They are a popular spice used in a variety of ways in Asian cuisine. In fact, cloves form the basis of a lot of the food in a number of different nations.

Cloves have an interesting history. During the 13th and 14th centuries, they were transported all the way from Indonesia to pretty much all over the known world. I would think Marco Polo shipped some cloves to Italy and other European nations. During this time, cloves were very expensive, so much so that they were the subject of wars for monopoly over their production, distribution, and the islands where they came from. Dutch traders emerged victorious and held the Maluku islands for some time.

When we talk about natural plants, we usually talk about using leaves, roots or flowers, but with cloves, it’s the flower buds that are used as a spice and for most of its medicinal purposes. These look like miniature nails from your tool box. They are processed in a number of ways; for example, we use the essential oil in some of our kits.

Clove bud

Clove bud

Cloves are antioxidant powerhouses. Minerals in cloves include calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorous, potassium, sodium, and zinc. The vitamins found in them include vitamin C, thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, folate, vitamin B6, vitamin B12, vitamin A, vitamin E, vitamin D, and vitamin K. They are also a source of Omega-3 fatty acids (the good kind).

Cloves are reported to have many health benefits, some of which include providing aid in digestion, having antimicrobial properties, fighting against cancer, protecting the liver, boosting the immune system, controlling diabetes, preserving bone quality, as well as fighting against oral diseases and headaches, while also, at least the Chinese say, displaying aphrodisiac properties. Which takes me to, how do I know if cloves are effective against this problem or that problem? I’ll admit that hard scientific data is hard to come by, so you have to understand that the reports aren’t always proof, and effects may be very individual, some may receive these health benefits in full, others, not so much.

What makes Clove buds a useful part of your off-grid medicine cabinet? The health benefits include beneficial effects on pain and inflammation, but also a negative effect on bacterial, viruses, fungi, and more. Like many herbs, Clove have a number of different compounds that may have medical uses, but the most well-known is called “Eugenol”.

Here are eight benefits that cloves may impart to your off-grid patients:

  1. Pain relief: We supply clove oil in all our dental kits because of its anesthetic and antiseptic effect in damaged teeth. Mixing 2 drops of clove oil with some zinc oxide powder can produce improvised temporary cement, useful for lost fillings and other oral issues. It may also relieve gum discomfort, but beware of using too much or too often; it can cause irritation.
  2. Breath issues: It may be hard to distill oil, but teas are easy to make right from the garden (and after drying in many cases). Gargling some tea made with cloves is thought to be a great way to eliminate bad breath.
  3. Respiratory ailments: Clove in its various forms is reported to be helpful for respiratory system complaints due to antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, and expectorant effects. It’s been used for colds, sore throat, bronchitis, sinusitis, and more. Warm tea is a good way to access these benefits but better, perhaps, is adding clove oil to hot water and inhale steam.
  4. GI problems: Nausea and vomiting might be improved with direct inhalation of clove oil in a cloth. Mix some powdered clove buds with honey to decrease gas. It’s possible that cloves improve the production of digestive enzymes and help relax irritated intestinal lining, which might help stomach ache, diarrhea, and other GI discomforts.
  5. Ear infections: Clove has anesthetic and antimicrobial oral properties, but these also pertain to the ear canal. A combination of clove oil and sesame oil soaked in a cotton ball (best if warm) can relieve earache and treat infection. Alternatively, make an infusion with crushed cloves and olive oil, let sit for an hour, strain well, and put a few warm drops in the affected ear.
  6. Skin blemishes: Acne may be improved with Cloves due to its antibacterial effect. Mix clove oil with coconut oil (ratio 1:10) and apply to affected skin with a Q-tip two or three times daily until improved.
  7. Headaches: Due to it pain-relieving properties, massaging Clove oil mixed with coconut oil into the forehead or other area can relieve headache discomfort. Alternatively, place a few drops of clove oil on a warm cloth and apply to where the pain is.
  8. Joint Pain: Massaging aching joints with the above mixtures may work the same way on joint pain. Alternatively, a warm clove compress to the joints may be helpful.

It should be noted that clove oil is pretty strong stuff, and must be used sparingly. It can cause irritation, as mentioned above, but also has ill effects on the body’s cells when used excessively. It may also slow blood clotting, and, hence, not used prior to surgery. Having said that, used correctly in small amounts by diluting with carrier oils or liquids, clove oil is generally considered to be safe. You can expect whole dried clove buds to last 3-4 years if stored properly.

With clove oil and other natural plant oils, teas, tinctures, infusions, and balms, the quality of the product and medicinal benefits may vary due to a number of reasons. Soil conditions, seasonal temperatures, rainfall, and time of harvest are just some of the factors involved in determining the end product when it comes to herbal products. Many of these remedies also vary from individual to individual.

The off-grid or homestead medic should have a stockpile of commercial medicines, but also a sustainable supply of plants with medicinal properties for use in good times or bad. Use all the tools in the woodshed and you’ll be a more effective caregiver in austere settings.

Joe Alton

Dr. Alton

Joe Alton MD

Find out more about cloves, other natural remedies, and much more with the Third Edition of the Survival Medicine Handbook: The Essential Guide for When Medical Help is Not on the Way, 2017 winner of the Book Excellence Award in the medical category.

Plus, don’t forget to check out Nurse Amy’s entire line of kits and supplies at store.doomandbloom.net.

You’ll be glad you did!

 

8 Health Benefits of Cloves

Health Benefits of Clove

Dried Clove Buds

Dried Clove Buds

Our readers often ask us to comment on various natural remedies. Face it, medics can stockpile all the drugs they can, but if a disaster event lasts long enough, medicine and supplies will be expended. Unless society restabilizes pretty darn quickly, commercial medical items and drugs will be hard to find unless your retreat is the local hospital.

That leaves you with whatever’s in your back yard that might have medicinal benefits. Therefore, you’d be smart to start planting an herb garden in normal times. Once you get over the learning curve, you’ll figure out what plants do well in your grow zone. These plants will comprise your survival medicine cabinet.  Once you get through a good season, you can experiment a little with teas, tinctures, or other ways that plants are processed into medicines. Your ancestors did just that, and had this plant or that plant in the garden not because it was food necessarily, but to treat illnesses and injuries.

Many medicinal plants are herbs that are mostly used in cooking, but also have uses for the medic. Today, let’s talk about cloves.

Clove Tree

Clove Tree

Cloves, (syzygium aromaticum) are one of the spices native to Asia. You can find them in places like the Maluku islands in Indonesia, where it might have originated, but also in India, Pakistan, and even areas of East Africa. They are a popular spice used in a variety of ways in Asian cuisine. In fact, cloves form the basis of a lot of the food in a number of different nations.

Cloves have an interesting history. During the 13th and 14th centuries, they were transported all the way from Indonesia to pretty much all over the known world. I would think Marco Polo shipped some cloves to Italy and other European nations. During this time, cloves were very expensive, so much so that they were the subject of wars for monopoly over their production, distribution, and the islands where they came from. Dutch traders emerged victorious and held the Maluku islands for some time.

When we talk about natural plants, we usually talk about using leaves, roots or flowers, but with cloves, it’s the flower buds that are used as a spice and for most of its medicinal purposes. These look like miniature nails from your tool box. They are processed in a number of ways; for example, we use the essential oil in some of our kits.

Clove bud

Clove bud

Cloves are antioxidant powerhouses. Minerals in cloves include calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorous, potassium, sodium, and zinc. The vitamins found in them include vitamin C, thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, folate, vitamin B6, vitamin B12, vitamin A, vitamin E, vitamin D, and vitamin K. They are also a source of Omega-3 fatty acids (the good kind).

Cloves are reported to have many health benefits, some of which include providing aid in digestion, having antimicrobial properties, fighting against cancer, protecting the liver, boosting the immune system, controlling diabetes, preserving bone quality, as well as fighting against oral diseases and headaches, while also, at least the Chinese say, displaying aphrodisiac properties. Which takes me to, how do I know if cloves are effective against this problem or that problem? I’ll admit that hard scientific data is hard to come by, so you have to understand that the reports aren’t always proof, and effects may be very individual, some may receive these health benefits in full, others, not so much.

What makes Clove buds a useful part of your off-grid medicine cabinet? The health benefits include beneficial effects on pain and inflammation, but also a negative effect on bacterial, viruses, fungi, and more. Like many herbs, Clove have a number of different compounds that may have medical uses, but the most well-known is called “Eugenol”.

Here are eight benefits that cloves may impart to your off-grid patients:

  1. Pain relief: We supply clove oil in all our dental kits because of its anesthetic and antiseptic effect in damaged teeth. Mixing 2 drops of clove oil with some zinc oxide powder can produce improvised temporary cement, useful for lost fillings and other oral issues. It may also relieve gum discomfort, but beware of using too much or too often; it can cause irritation.
  2. Breath issues: It may be hard to distill oil, but teas are easy to make right from the garden (and after drying in many cases). Gargling some tea made with cloves is thought to be a great way to eliminate bad breath.
  3. Respiratory ailments: Clove in its various forms is reported to be helpful for respiratory system complaints due to antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, and expectorant effects. It’s been used for colds, sore throat, bronchitis, sinusitis, and more. Warm tea is a good way to access these benefits but better, perhaps, is adding clove oil to hot water and inhale steam.
  4. GI problems: Nausea and vomiting might be improved with direct inhalation of clove oil in a cloth. Mix some powdered clove buds with honey to decrease gas. It’s possible that cloves improve the production of digestive enzymes and help relax irritated intestinal lining, which might help stomach ache, diarrhea, and other GI discomforts.
  5. Ear infections: Clove has anesthetic and antimicrobial oral properties, but these also pertain to the ear canal. A combination of clove oil and sesame oil soaked in a cotton ball (best if warm) can relieve earache and treat infection. Alternatively, make an infusion with crushed cloves and olive oil, let sit for an hour, strain well, and put a few warm drops in the affected ear.
  6. Skin blemishes: Acne may be improved with Cloves due to its antibacterial effect. Mix clove oil with coconut oil (ratio 1:10) and apply to affected skin with a Q-tip two or three times daily until improved.
  7. Headaches: Due to it pain-relieving properties, massaging Clove oil mixed with coconut oil into the forehead or other area can relieve headache discomfort. Alternatively, place a few drops of clove oil on a warm cloth and apply to where the pain is.
  8. Joint Pain: Massaging aching joints with the above mixtures may work the same way on joint pain. Alternatively, a warm clove compress to the joints may be helpful.

It should be noted that clove oil is pretty strong stuff, and must be used sparingly. It can cause irritation, as mentioned above, but also has ill effects on the body’s cells when used excessively. It may also slow blood clotting, and, hence, not used prior to surgery. Having said that, used correctly in small amounts by diluting with carrier oils or liquids, clove oil is generally considered to be safe. You can expect whole dried clove buds to last 3-4 years if stored properly.

With clove oil and other natural plant oils, teas, tinctures, infusions, and balms, the quality of the product and medicinal benefits may vary due to a number of reasons. Soil conditions, seasonal temperatures, rainfall, and time of harvest are just some of the factors involved in determining the end product when it comes to herbal products. Many of these remedies also vary from individual to individual.

The off-grid or homestead medic should have a stockpile of commercial medicines, but also a sustainable supply of plants with medicinal properties for use in good times or bad. Use all the tools in the woodshed and you’ll be a more effective caregiver in austere settings.

Joe Alton

Dr. Alton

Joe Alton MD

Find out more about cloves, other natural remedies, and much more with the Third Edition of the Survival Medicine Handbook: The Essential Guide for When Medical Help is Not on the Way, 2017 winner of the Book Excellence Award in the medical category.

Plus, don’t forget to check out Nurse Amy’s entire line of kits and supplies at store.doomandbloom.net.

You’ll be glad you did!

 

8 Health Benefits of Cloves

Health Benefits of Clove

Dried Clove Buds

Dried Clove Buds

Our readers often ask us to comment on various natural remedies. Face it, medics can stockpile all the drugs they can, but if a disaster event lasts long enough, medicine and supplies will be expended. Unless society restabilizes pretty darn quickly, commercial medical items and drugs will be hard to find unless your retreat is the local hospital.

That leaves you with whatever’s in your back yard that might have medicinal benefits. Therefore, you’d be smart to start planting an herb garden in normal times. Once you get over the learning curve, you’ll figure out what plants do well in your grow zone. These plants will comprise your survival medicine cabinet.  Once you get through a good season, you can experiment a little with teas, tinctures, or other ways that plants are processed into medicines. Your ancestors did just that, and had this plant or that plant in the garden not because it was food necessarily, but to treat illnesses and injuries.

Many medicinal plants are herbs that are mostly used in cooking, but also have uses for the medic. Today, let’s talk about cloves.

Clove Tree

Clove Tree

Cloves, (syzygium aromaticum) are one of the spices native to Asia. You can find them in places like the Maluku islands in Indonesia, where it might have originated, but also in India, Pakistan, and even areas of East Africa. They are a popular spice used in a variety of ways in Asian cuisine. In fact, cloves form the basis of a lot of the food in a number of different nations.

Cloves have an interesting history. During the 13th and 14th centuries, they were transported all the way from Indonesia to pretty much all over the known world. I would think Marco Polo shipped some cloves to Italy and other European nations. During this time, cloves were very expensive, so much so that they were the subject of wars for monopoly over their production, distribution, and the islands where they came from. Dutch traders emerged victorious and held the Maluku islands for some time.

When we talk about natural plants, we usually talk about using leaves, roots or flowers, but with cloves, it’s the flower buds that are used as a spice and for most of its medicinal purposes. These look like miniature nails from your tool box. They are processed in a number of ways; for example, we use the essential oil in some of our kits.

Clove bud

Clove bud

Cloves are antioxidant powerhouses. Minerals in cloves include calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorous, potassium, sodium, and zinc. The vitamins found in them include vitamin C, thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, folate, vitamin B6, vitamin B12, vitamin A, vitamin E, vitamin D, and vitamin K. They are also a source of Omega-3 fatty acids (the good kind).

Cloves are reported to have many health benefits, some of which include providing aid in digestion, having antimicrobial properties, fighting against cancer, protecting the liver, boosting the immune system, controlling diabetes, preserving bone quality, as well as fighting against oral diseases and headaches, while also, at least the Chinese say, displaying aphrodisiac properties. Which takes me to, how do I know if cloves are effective against this problem or that problem? I’ll admit that hard scientific data is hard to come by, so you have to understand that the reports aren’t always proof, and effects may be very individual, some may receive these health benefits in full, others, not so much.

What makes Clove buds a useful part of your off-grid medicine cabinet? The health benefits include beneficial effects on pain and inflammation, but also a negative effect on bacterial, viruses, fungi, and more. Like many herbs, Clove have a number of different compounds that may have medical uses, but the most well-known is called “Eugenol”.

Here are eight benefits that cloves may impart to your off-grid patients:

  1. Pain relief: We supply clove oil in all our dental kits because of its anesthetic and antiseptic effect in damaged teeth. Mixing 2 drops of clove oil with some zinc oxide powder can produce improvised temporary cement, useful for lost fillings and other oral issues. It may also relieve gum discomfort, but beware of using too much or too often; it can cause irritation.
  2. Breath issues: It may be hard to distill oil, but teas are easy to make right from the garden (and after drying in many cases). Gargling some tea made with cloves is thought to be a great way to eliminate bad breath.
  3. Respiratory ailments: Clove in its various forms is reported to be helpful for respiratory system complaints due to antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, and expectorant effects. It’s been used for colds, sore throat, bronchitis, sinusitis, and more. Warm tea is a good way to access these benefits but better, perhaps, is adding clove oil to hot water and inhale steam.
  4. GI problems: Nausea and vomiting might be improved with direct inhalation of clove oil in a cloth. Mix some powdered clove buds with honey to decrease gas. It’s possible that cloves improve the production of digestive enzymes and help relax irritated intestinal lining, which might help stomach ache, diarrhea, and other GI discomforts.
  5. Ear infections: Clove has anesthetic and antimicrobial oral properties, but these also pertain to the ear canal. A combination of clove oil and sesame oil soaked in a cotton ball (best if warm) can relieve earache and treat infection. Alternatively, make an infusion with crushed cloves and olive oil, let sit for an hour, strain well, and put a few warm drops in the affected ear.
  6. Skin blemishes: Acne may be improved with Cloves due to its antibacterial effect. Mix clove oil with coconut oil (ratio 1:10) and apply to affected skin with a Q-tip two or three times daily until improved.
  7. Headaches: Due to it pain-relieving properties, massaging Clove oil mixed with coconut oil into the forehead or other area can relieve headache discomfort. Alternatively, place a few drops of clove oil on a warm cloth and apply to where the pain is.
  8. Joint Pain: Massaging aching joints with the above mixtures may work the same way on joint pain. Alternatively, a warm clove compress to the joints may be helpful.

It should be noted that clove oil is pretty strong stuff, and must be used sparingly. It can cause irritation, as mentioned above, but also has ill effects on the body’s cells when used excessively. It may also slow blood clotting, and, hence, not used prior to surgery. Having said that, used correctly in small amounts by diluting with carrier oils or liquids, clove oil is generally considered to be safe. You can expect whole dried clove buds to last 3-4 years if stored properly.

With clove oil and other natural plant oils, teas, tinctures, infusions, and balms, the quality of the product and medicinal benefits may vary due to a number of reasons. Soil conditions, seasonal temperatures, rainfall, and time of harvest are just some of the factors involved in determining the end product when it comes to herbal products. Many of these remedies also vary from individual to individual.

The off-grid or homestead medic should have a stockpile of commercial medicines, but also a sustainable supply of plants with medicinal properties for use in good times or bad. Use all the tools in the woodshed and you’ll be a more effective caregiver in austere settings.

Joe Alton

Dr. Alton

Joe Alton MD

Find out more about cloves, other natural remedies, and much more with the Third Edition of the Survival Medicine Handbook: The Essential Guide for When Medical Help is Not on the Way, 2017 winner of the Book Excellence Award in the medical category.

Plus, don’t forget to check out Nurse Amy’s entire line of kits and supplies at store.doomandbloom.net.

You’ll be glad you did!

 

How to Survive a 3 Day Power Outage

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Facing an extended power outage can be a daunting thing. Electricity is something that most of us rely on almost every waking minute of our lives. While the conveniences electricity brings are wonderful, we’ve all had them for so long that we might take this small miracle for granted at times. Could you survive for […]

The post How to Survive a 3 Day Power Outage appeared first on Simple Family Preparedness.

Permaculture Zone Planning for When Winter is Coming

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Written by R. Ann Parris on The Prepper Journal.

Editors Note: Another contribution from R. Ann Parris to The Prepper Journal. As always, if you have information for Preppers that you would like to share and possibly receive a $25 cash award, as well as being entered into the Prepper Writing Contest AND have a chance to win one of three Amazon Gift Cards  with the top prize being a $300 card to purchase your own prepping supplies, then enter today!

Something that can be of value to any prepper at any stage of development, even urban preppers in tight dwellings, is planning. Permaculture’s sectors and zone maps are two of the most powerful tools for developing a plan, both for assessing risks, identifying resources, and developing efficient plans for a site.

Usually sectors gets covered first. I’m going to cover Zones instead. I highly endorse doing a search for “permaculture sectors” – that’s where risks and resources are going to be found. Research it with an eye for defensive and evacuation potential as well.

Zone mapping in permaculture is where we define areas by our presence, using activity and energy input level. By consolidating things that need the same amount of interaction, or even each other, we can greatly increase our efficiency. With a map that actually shows our patterns, and our goals, we can move or site things to maximize that efficiency.

Permie Zones

Permaculture zones are abstract geographic areas delineated from the other areas of our property – or our habitual paths – by the amount of time we spend in that area. The zones are based on access, not geographic nearness to our homes and beds. Many zone map examples are shown in concentric rings, but actual zones are drawn and defined by our energy and presence, not distance.

Permaculture universally recognizes 5 zones, in ascending order based on the time we spend there. Sometimes there’s a Zone 0 for the self or the home. The primary-activity and most-visited zones are Zones 1 and 2.

1 Very intensive presence – Most active, usually multiple trips/passes daily

2Intensive use – Active, possibly still multiple visits per day, but not quite as frequent as Zone 1

Zone 1 is where your paths most frequently take you. It’s based almost entirely on our human environment.

Things like kitchen herbs and table gardens that need irrigation or are harvested from daily, pets and livestock that are visited daily for care or entertainment, and daily waste and composting areas are located in Zone 1.

Our kitchens and bathrooms are pretty automatic on a household/apartment level, although in permaculture, most will automatically stick the whole house in Zone 0-1.

I don’t, because I have a front stoop I almost never go in/on/through, a spare bedroom I’m only in one part of the year, only pass through my den, and on a daily basis, I usually only poke my head into the living room if I’m looking for a person or a dog. On the other hand, my father spends far more time in the living room. He rarely uses his kitchen porch, whereas my mother and I are on ours ten to fifteen times a day for access to the yard, gardens, or letting animals in and out.

The inclinations between the back and kitchen doors and-or time spent in different rooms change the views and the opportunities our presence offers. For us, it matters. For others, maybe not as much.

Zone 1 sometimes includes livestock, or sometimes they’re bumped to Zone 2, even if they’re livestock we bed down and release, milk, collect eggs from, or feed twice daily.

Zone 2 includes those areas that may not see quite as much human interaction. Regularly permies will include things like perennials with longer seasons between harvests and less daily and weekly care needed, and some livestock like foraging cattle or meat goats.

Zones 3 and 4 see increasingly less human interaction and fewer human inputs (or will, once established).

Zone 3 is larger elements, usually – the bulk foods like grains and orchards, animal pastures, ponds. They are things we may only see weekly, monthly or quarterly.

Zone 4 gets even less interaction. Usually this is managed land, tailored for foraging, livestock fodder and crop trees, timber, and longer-term grazing.

Zone 5 is an area that humans largely leave alone. Some will define this as an entirely wild area. Some will define it as a managed wild area.

To some, it’s for nature and only nature – left as a green-way – while to others, periodic hunting or foraging in this area is expected. For others, Zone 5 might be brush piles, frog houses, owl and dove and bat houses, little native patches of weeds, and other things we scatter through a yard and garden and affix to buildings to encourage helpful wildlife.

This site http://deepgreenpermaculture.com/permaculture/permaculture-design-principles/4-zones-and-sectors-efficient-energy-planning/ has a more detailed set of examples and some graphics of Zone definitions. It also has some subsections about common zone sizes.

 

Permaculture Research Institute – Urban farm rabbits located over composting bins, near water catchment, and along path between house, shed and garage.

Urban & Suburban Sites

There’s nothing wrong with taking a set of known factors and twitching it. Zone definitions can be rearranged and relisted, tailoring them to fit our lifestyles.

For an apartment, condo, or a single-family home on less than a half-acre, zones shrink and include our floorplan. When we turn to sector mapping, we zoom out and include more of our neighborhood with condos and small yards, but that “zoom” can apply to zones as well.

Regardless of where we’re going, or what’s around us as we putter through the day, our habits tend to change by season, and what’s around us changes. There may be areas we can “expand” into besides our own property.

That’s really worthy of its own article, but some examples would be any areas we can hit with seed bombs for wild edibles or for plants that can be improving the soil now for use in a crisis. We might have parks, verges, ditches and other areas that are untapped resources but are on some of our daily, weekly and monthly beaten paths. We might also find landowners (or absent landowners) to talk to about growing space, or have rooftops or fire escape landings that we can use for planters and water catchment, now or “after”.

Knowing where we go most frequently will help even the tiniest studio prepper identify places that have the most potential with the least effort – and that’s really what efficiency is all about, with efficiency one of the major gods of the permies.

Multiple Maps

What I recommend and what I do for clients is to actually print three identical maps. Two are for “right now”, and are going to be our habitual activity maps, one for the “high season” when we’re outside the most and one for the “slow season” when we’re outside least.

The third map is going to be our “ideal” map – what we’re about to work to make happen.

See, we’re going to use these maps to identify existing zones using our current activity. However, going back to efficiency, we’re also going to use them as a planning tool. Some of the trends we identify will lead to changes, hopefully consolidating our zones of activity for better efficiency.

We can also nab a wider view for our neighborhoods, even as home- and landowners.

Those with significant acreage might want to do one map set with just the house and the 0.5-1 acre it sits on and a second set with the whole property and a margin around it.

 

Supplies for Mapping

Printing and drawing really is the easiest way to make this happen. You can use computer programs to trace lines that will progressively darken or lighten with every pass. That’s not crazy talk, since it offers opportunities to make multiple-scale maps at once, then just zoom in and out. For the average client, it’s a black-and-white drawing or Google map of their property, regularly with a chunk of the surrounding area that’s going to leave some margin for additional notes.

I really like the Google Earth maps that are nice and up-to-date, and that you can adjust by season and time of day. They let you pick noon in the barest of winter, which lets you “see” more of your property. If you can’t get a free submission to Google Earth, find out if a local library has it, do some screen grabs at various zooms/scales and print them off wherever it’s cheapest.

For paper, standard letter 8.5×11” is fine, or we can go up to 11×17 or even 17×24” if we want.

We’ll also want some coloring supplies.

A couple of sharpened crayons or colored pencils are fine. Markers also work, although you either want really fine points or really big maps. Aim for colors that are easy to see on a simple map, that you’ll be able to see the map through (no dark Sharpies or pens), and that will darken as you overlap lines. Red, orange, blue, and pale purple tend to work really well.

One Map

If you only want to print one map, no big there. Hit the dollar store for some of that thin notebook or copy paper that you can trace through. You can shine a light through some plastic or use a bright window to help see better. Call it an overlay.

You can also create a larger map and make overlays of your zones and sectors using contact paper and map pens or grease pencils.

Overlays will also help reduce printing in case you decide you want to add seasonal maps, do maps for each member of the family, or combine everything into a single map.

It’s also a backup against an ill-timed sneeze, doggy nose-bump, or a beloved’s alarm going off and making us jump with a marker in our hand. Hey, we’re preppers. Prepare for crazy things.

The Process of Activity Mapping

This is where the “darkens as we overlap lines, but not too dark” comes into play. Observe, then color.

Start with your first work-day wake-up, and trace your tracks through the house, then outside it. Back and forth, bathroom, coffee, paper, animals, meals, vehicles, back and forth, all through your day until you tuck yourself in at night. To and from the bus, trash can, walking the dogs, as we hang out and retrace steps from vehicles or gardens to sheds and garages, the hose, indoor faucets, all the way down our rows and around our flower/garden beds.

Don’t draw bird-flies straight lines. Trace the actual path everyone takes. Then repeat for the work week, and the weekend.

Remember, it’s the overlaps – resulting in darker colors – that give us our current intensity of use. Be honest with yourself. You’re the one who does or doesn’t benefit.

 

  

Zone Map

Your existing zone map just drew itself.

The darkest areas are your 0-1-2 zones. Your palest and untouched areas are your Zone 4 and really, really excellent places to expand that Zone 4 or develop your Zone 5.

Now we go through, and kind of divide those spaces into blobs and blurbs and modern art. We can re-draw or trace our map and give them different colors now, or make them more uniform shades, or just more clearly delineate edges.

You should be able to identify some of the areas you only hit a couple of times a year, like pruning, or places we inspect and repair only as needed.

We should also be observant enough to know those wide, looping, lightly-drawn areas are only us mowing – and maybe we keep those in our map in their apparent zones, or maybe we go back and remove those, or lighten them to more accurately reflect how much attention they actually get while they’re getting mowed. Otherwise, especially for us Southerners, our summer map is going to show our twice-weekly or 2-6 times-monthly sing-along ride or teenager’s slave labor as getting more attention than our workshop and laundry room.

Shoveling snow and raking leaves has some impact on applying the information we just gathered, but not really a ton, so you can go light there, too, if you like.

Applying the Zone Map

Our map doesn’t just sit there. It’s a tool, one of many.

Most of us are likely to have some of our darker/intense areas out there on their own, and many of us likely have dark lines like a drunken spider’s web hooking and criss-crossing.

Those oddball dark jags are places where we can consolidate some of our activities, instead of leaving them suspended and isolated. That will save us time and effort, which will make us more efficient.

When we plan to expand gardens or even change where we keep the tools we use, consult the existing zone map. Places we’re already passing make excellent locations for those.

If we’re passing them regularly, they get more attention and we see that they’re dry, being eaten by critters, sick and sad, or ready to harvest. Being faster to respond to them, and able to respond immediately with tools if necessary, will result in better yields.

Worm bin composter located near the source of feed and easy access to water.

Sometimes we might look at our plan and actively renovate things we already have in place – especially if those things don’t get the attention they should. The extra attention and ease may make it worth it to switch from conventional beds to a series of trash cans turned into vertical gardens, from hot composting piles kept across the yard to a pipe composter in a keyhole bed or a worm composter near the kitchen or the trash.

We may move livestock so it’s faster and easier to get them into gardens for pest control or tilling, or to get composted manure onto large plots. We might move them somewhere else so they’re easier to toss kitchen scraps to.

  

We might eschew the usual advice of sticking an orchard out-out so we can put small livestock under it, or to make some additional use of our dog runs and kids’ play areas.

Things like the sectors that affect our property, stacking elements and stacking functions, mapping water movement, and switching to low- or lower-labor growing styles that fit into our busy lives can all help make our properties, big or small, more efficient and productive.

A zone map will help us further analyze where we can increase our efficiency and help us visualize how the puzzle pieces of our production and resources can best fit together. We can then play with the map, marking future expansions to see how they’ll fit in with our current traffic flows and patterns, and make our properties more versatile, resilient and productive all over again.

 

 

The post Permaculture Zone Planning for When Winter is Coming appeared first on The Prepper Journal.

Puerto Rico: A Real Life Case Study In Surviving The Worst

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Our country has been plastered by hurricanes lately.

First there was Hurricane Harvey, which turned much of Houston, Texas into a lake, along with Corpus Christi, Rockport and the surrounding area. Then there was Hurricane Irma, which brushed by Puerto Rico and then tried to devour the Florida Peninsula. Finally, the third villain in this story was Hurricane Maria, which demolished Puerto Rico.

While Hurricane Maria was the “weakest” of the three, only a Category IV hurricane, it probably did the most damage. That damage is exacerbated by the fact that Puerto Rico is an island, making it harder to get relief workers and supplies in. Unlike Houston, access to Puerto Rico is limited to a few ports and airports, both of which were damaged by the storm.

Thousands of homes in Puerto Rico were destroyed by the hurricane, some only having their roofs torn off, while others were flattened entirely. Entire apartment buildings are standing with the façade torn off by the high winds, leaving the apartments exposed to the elements.

But the really serious damage from the hurricane wasn’t to people’s homes, although that is rather serious, but rather to the electrical grid. Over 95% of the island is currently without electrical power, not because of damage to the power plants, but rather to the near-total destruction of the transmission lines that carry the electricity produced to people’s homes, offices, stores and companies.

Without electricity, much of what people depend on to survive is eliminated. There is no running water, no communications, and most stores are unable to operate.

Between the lack of electric power to run their cash registers and the communications necessary to reorder stock, even if they sell their inventory for cash, using hand-written receipts, the stores will be empty of critical supplies, such as food, within less than three days.

World’s Smallest Battery Will Power Your House For More Than 2 Days!

But coming up with that cash will be difficult for most people, as the ATM machines that they need to use and the computers for the banks are without power and communications as well. Since few people hold onto much cash these days, but rather use plastic for all their purchases, they are left without the ability to buy even the most basic necessities of life.

While relief efforts are pouring in, there isn’t enough and it’s not getting there fast enough. Unlike the rest of the country, the people of Puerto Rico are limited by being on an island. There isn’t anyplace they can go themselves, to get away from the problems or get what they need.

But getting supplies to the island is only the beginning of the problems. Once the supplies get there, workers encounter problems moving them to those in need. Roads are damaged or blocked by felled trees and other debris and gasoline is in short supply. Those nearest the ports and airports have the best chances of receiving relief supplies, while others, on more remote areas, may receive none.

Medical Issues

The problems that ordinary people have are bad enough. But they don’t hold a candle up to the problems faced by those with serious medical conditions. Hospitals are overrun, between the people who were injured by the hurricane and the normal problems they have to deal with.

On top of that, diesel fuel to run the hospitals’ generators is running short, limiting their ability to treat patients.

The lack of electricity is causing other medical problems as well, such as there not being power to run kidney dialysis machines. People with kidney failure need this treatment three times per week. Without it, their body accumulates too many minerals in the bloodstream and organs, leading to heavy-metal poisoning and death.

The same can be said for many other medical treatments which require electricity to run the equipment.

Medicines themselves are becoming an issue as well. While pharmacies and hospitals were well stocked before the storm, some medicines are running short. The worst of this are medicines which require refrigeration, like insulin. Without refrigeration to keep insulin supplies fresh, diabetics will soon find themselves without this life-saving drug.

Recovery from the Disaster

Rebuilding and restoring Puerto Rico is going to be a major project. The damage was so severe and widespread, that there isn’t any place “safe” on the island that people can go to, to get away from the problems. That also means that there is no good starting point to work from in rebuilding the island. If only part had been damaged, they could use that as a base for rebuilding the rest.

Unsurprisingly, officials have decided that the first focus of restoration has to be government facilities and hospitals. While that makes sense from the viewpoint of needing those to be functional in order to rebuild the rest of the island, it can also be seen as government bureaucrats taking care of themselves.

The first thing that has to be restored is the electrical grid. With so much of the grid damaged, repairs are impossible. Rather, the distribution grid needs to be rebuilt. This little project is projected to take six months, which probably means it will take much longer.

In the mean time, the loss of electricity will mean that people will be without clean running water, power in their homes, refrigeration and the distribution of products to retail stores will be severely limited. As all the farms in the country were destroyed by the hurricane, all food will need to be shipped in for at least the next year, until the 2018 harvest comes in.

While the death toll from the hurricane is officially stated as 16 people, that number will surely rise. Between the lack of necessary medical attention and the lack of clean water, they can expect to see more and more people dying, either of pre-existing conditions or from disease spreading easily due to lack of sanitation. The situation isn’t pretty and it’s likely to get worse, even with all of the efforts being thrown into relief and recovery.

This problem is amplified by the Puerto Rican government’s poor financial condition. With an economy that is near the bankruptcy point, there isn’t the money needed to rebuild the island. Fortunately for them, President Trump has waived the normal requirement for states to pay 25% of disaster relief and recovery funds.

Lessons to be Learned

This disaster was just about as serious as they come. While the process of rebuilding won’t be as bad as it would have been with an EMP, the outright destruction is much worse. The people of Puerto Rico, American citizens, are going to be hard pressed to survive this disaster and come out on top.

Video first seen on The Oregonian.

Nevertheless, there are a lot of lessons that you and I can learn from this disaster. Lessons that we should apply to our own prepping plans, so that when our turn comes, we are not left in the same boat as our countrymen find themselves.

If we don’t take the opportunity to learn, then we could say that their suffering would be in vain.

Shelter

One of the biggest lessons that we can take away from this hurricane, as well as the ones that hit Houston and Florida is that American homes are not built to withstand natural disasters, especially disasters that involve enormous amounts of water. Our homes are easily damaged in any sort of flooding, which ends up soaking into the materials and destroying them.

Granted, many of the homes which were the worst hit in the hurricane are those of the poor. As such, they aren’t built according to normal American standards, but rather, in any way possible. So they are not as strong as a typical American home.

But that really doesn’t make much difference.

In a time of major disaster, we have to assume that our home will be damaged, unless you happen to live in a concrete box. With that in mind, there are two things that we should do.

The first is to be ready to make emergency repairs to our home, having the necessary tools, materials and skills on hand to accomplish those repairs. The second is to have an alternate means of shelter that we can use, if our homes become completely destroyed.

I had previously thought of using a travel trailer as my alternate shelter, in case of a hurricane destroying my home (I live in a hurricane zone as well). However, looking at the damage in Puerto Rico, it is clear that such an idea was ill-founded; a travel trailer would not survive.

It would be best to have a shelter somewhere away from your home, the classic survival retreat that we all aspire to. But if you can’t afford that, at least make sure that you have a good tent or two that you can count on.

Water

The lack of clean water in Puerto Rico is going to account for many deaths. Had those people but had some means of purifying their water, they could survive. Yet few actually did. While I have no idea how many preppers there are in Puerto Rico, it is clear that there aren’t enough.

But I see something else here as well. This is one area, in which we, as preppers, can really serve our communities, earning their respect and hopefully giving them a reason to not attack us. That is, for us to be ready to provide water filtration to those around us. For us, this is easy, as we already plan on purifying our own water. All we really need to do is increase our capacity.

Another lesson that we can take away from this is the need to be ready to harvest rainwater. While a lot of us are already using rainwater capture, we probably don’t have anywhere near the capacity needed to capture even an infinitesimal amount of the water that would fall on our homes in a hurricane. Increasing that capacity would also increase our chances of survival.

Food

With the island’s farms in a shambles, food is going to be a real challenge for the next year, with prices considerably higher than normal. While food shortages aren’t a major issue yet, they soon will be, as people and stores run out. FEMA and other relief agencies just can’t get food to the island quick enough.

This pretty much answers the question of whether or not it is unreasonable to have a year’s worth of food stockpiled. For the people of Puerto Rico, a one year supply of food seems like a minimum, right now. Those that don’t have that much (most people) are probably going to end up losing weight.

There’s something else that this disaster brings up in the food area, as well. That is, protecting your food stockpile from destruction. If my home had been in Puerto Rico for the hurricane, it looks to me like much of my food stockpile would have been damaged or even floated away. I need to rethink my food storage, looking for ways to make sure that my food stays at my home site, even if my home becomes damaged.

One way to do this is to bury some of it. Five gallon buckets, filled with food will bury just fine, protecting the food. About the only thing that could happen to it, to destroy it, would be driving a vehicle over the top.

Electric Power

As usual, the electrical grid is one of the first things damaged by any storm. Therefore, none of us can count on electricity after a disaster. We either need to be ready to do without, or to produce our own.

In this case, people who had solar panels or wind turbines probably saw them damaged by the storm. High winds can be hard on both, especially if they are not properly anchored. In that case, their preparedness wouldn’t have helped them at all.

When Hurricane Harvey was headed for my home, before turning and making landfall at Rockport, I took down my wind turbine, strapping it down behind a cement wall to protect it from the storm. Had it been up and the hurricane hit our area, I am sure that it would have been destroyed.

Medical Needs

As I mentioned above, one of the biggest problems facing the citizens of Puerto Rico is medical services and supplies. This is not uncommon in any disaster situation, as medical services tend to become overwhelmed.

But there is a big difference in this case, that is, their generators are going to prove to not be enough. When the supply of fuel is exhausted, the hospitals and all their equipment will be down.

The only medical services we can truly count on in a time of emergency are those that are already in our possession. If anything, we had better count on needing more than we thing, not less. Chances are, we’re going to find ourselves in a position where we won’t be able to count on the medical community.

Self-Defense

It didn’t take long for the two-legged predators to come out of the woodwork and start taking what they wanted. I’ve heard stories of gunmen at gas stations, threatening others so that they could get in line first. While a fairly simple example, this is indicative of what is going on in other areas as well.

As supplies become even shorter, people will become more desperate. More and more acts of violence will break forth, with people fighting over food, water and other basic necessities. Those who are not prepared to defend themselves will be the loser in this game.

FEMA

Once again, FEMA has proven that they are unprepared to deal with any emergency, especially a major one. While their workers are hard at it, trying to coordinate relief efforts, they are behind the curve. Without others pitching in to help out, FEMA will be unable to meet all the needs.

There is a stark difference between what is happening in Puerto Rico and what has happened in Houston. While I don’t have any actual figures for how much aid is reaching Puerto Rico or how much of that is from FEMA, most of it seems to be coming from FEMA or through the Red Cross. On the other hand, the large Christian community in Texas provided most of the help to the citizens of Houston. In fact, there was so much aid given by the Christian Community, that news agencies who are normally hostile to Christians commented positively about it.

Anyone who is dependent on the government to provide them with aid is asking for trouble. While government relief workers do their best, it’s never enough.

We must be ready to take care of ourselves, and if possible, those around us as well. Are you prepared?

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

6 things to consider when buying a rifle optic

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From time to time I get emails asking about rifle optics. It’s a great question I enjoy discussing. To answer that question, there are several different factors that need to go into the decision-making process. I thought I’d take a look 6 factors that you need to consider when purchasing an optic for your rifle. […]

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Learn About Natural Weather Forecasting

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As most everyone already knows, we did not always have scientific means to predict or forecast the coming weather. People long ago and even today use the other things to predict the weather; animal behavior, patterns they observe and good old fashion folklore and wives tales.

If for some unknown reason you were in a place that had nothing new and modern and you had to rely on something else then it never hurts to at least be aware of what is out there, so familiarize yourself with some of the old-time methods used. Of course these methods are neither perfect nor fool-proof, but they really do have their usefulness.

GENERAL WEATHER AND FORMULAS

Deaths occur most often when the tide is going out.

Births occur when the tide is coming in.

You could measure the distance of a storm by counting from the flash of the lightning to the sound of thunder.

Winter thunder means snow within 10 days.

Make a campfire. The smoke should rise steadily. Smoke that swirls and descends is caused by low pressure (i.e. rain on the way).

Take a deep breath. Close your eyes and smell the air.

Plants release their waste in a low pressure atmosphere, generating a smell like compost and indicating an upcoming rain.

Swamps will release gasses just before a storm because of the lower pressure, which leads to unpleasant smells.

A proverb says “Flowers smell best just before a rain.” Scents are stronger in moist air, associated with rainy weather.

Grow some scarlet pimpernel – Known as the Poor Man’s Barometer, its flowers close when atmospheric pressure decreases and rain is on the way. Dandelions and tulips do the same.

You can predict the weather with a persimmon seed. Here’s how to do it:

Cut open a persimmon seed.

Look at the shape of the kernel inside.

If the kernel is spoon-shaped, lots of heavy, wet snow will fall. Spoon = shovel!

If it is fork-shaped, you can expect powdery, light snow and a mild winter.

If the kernel is knife-shaped, expect to be “cut” by icy, cutting winds.

It’s best to use ripe seeds.

Did you know that you can tell the temperature by counting the chirps of a cricket? It’s true!

 Here’s the formula:

To convert cricket chirps to degrees Fahrenheit, count numbers of chirps in 14 seconds then add 40 to get temperature.

Example: 30 chirps + 40 = 70° F

To convert cricket chirps to degrees Celsius, count number of chirps in 25 seconds, divide by 3, and then add 4 to get temperature.

Example: 48 chirps /(divided by) 3 + 4 = 20° C

Reading a Pig’s spleen can predict the weather

Divide the spleen from top to bottom into 6 parts.

The top closest to the head shows current month.

Bottom is the last of the six months.

Where the spleen thickens, a change in the weather is indicated, usually pointing to a cold spell.

Where there’s a pronounced bulge, expect even more inclement weather.

Reading a Goose Bone

Watch the coloration as the bone dries.

If the bone turned blue, black, or purple, a cold winter lay ahead.

White indicated a mild winter.

Purple tips were a sure sign of a cold spring.

A blue color branching out toward the edge of the bone meant open weather until New Year’s Day.

If the bone was a dark color, or blue all over, the prediction was for a real bad winter.

The woolly bear caterpillar-with its 13 distinct segments of black and reddish-brown-has the reputation of being able to forecast the coming winter weather. According to legend, the wider that middle brown section is (i.e., the more brown segments there are), the milder the coming winter will be. Conversely, a narrow brown band is said to predict a harsh winter.

ANIMALS

If a deer or cow has extra layers of fat when slaughtered there will be a bad winter coming.

Cows that suddenly gather beneath large trees means rain is coming.

Expect rain when dogs eat grass.

Expect rain when cats purr and wash.

Expect rain when sheep turn into the wind.

Expect rain when oxen sniff the air.

Expect rain when swine are restless.
If the deer are out early grazing there is big storm coming.

Squirrels’ nesting in dead trees instead of making nests of leaves mean a harsh winter.

If the cows in pastures are all lying down, it’s a sure sign of rain.

If the bull leads the cows to pasture, expect rain.

if the cows precede the bull, the weather will be uncertain.

When cats sneeze, it is a sign of rain.

Bats flying late in the evening indicate fair weather.

If the groundhog sees its shadow on Candlemas Day (February 2), six more weeks of winter remain.

When horses and cattle stretch out their necks and sniff the air, it will rain.

If the mole digs its hole 2½ feet deep, expect severe weather.

If the mole digs its hole two feet deep, not so severe weather.

If the mole digs its hole one foot deep, expect a mild winter.

When pigs gather leaves and straw in all, expect a cold winter.

When rabbits are fat in October and November, expect a long, cold winter.

If sheep ascend hills and scatter, expect clear weather.

Wolves always howl more before a storm.

BIRDS

Birds singing in the rain indicates fair weather approaching.

If birds in the autumn grow tame, the winter will be too cold for game.

Partridges drumming in the fall mean a mild and open winter.

Chickens cackle and owls howl just before rain.

If crows fly in pairs, expect fine weather; a crow flying alone is a sign of foul weather.

When fowls roost in daytime, expect rain.

Seagulls tend to stop flying and take refuge at the coast if a storm is coming.

Animals, especially birds, get very quiet immediately before it rains.

The whiteness of a goose’s breastbone indicates the kind of winter: A red of dark-spotted bone means a cold and stormy winter; few or light-colored spots mean a mild winter.

When domestic geese walk east and fly west, expect cold weather.

Hawks flying high means a clear sky. When they fly low, prepare for a blow.

Petrels’ gathering under the stern of a ship indicates bad weather.

When the rooster goes crowing to bed, he will rise with watery head.

When seagulls fly inland, expect a storm.

When the swallow’s nest is high, the summer is very dry.

When the swallow builds low, you can safely reap and sow.

A very old wives tale says if birds feed in a storm it will rain for a long time, if they don’t it will clear soon.

INSECTS AND REPTILES

If ants their walls do frequent build, rain will from the clouds be spilled.

Ants are busy, gnats bite, crickets sing louder than usual, spiders come down from their webs, and flies gather in houses just before rain.

When bees to distance wing their flight, days are warm and skies are bright; But when their flight ends near their come, stormy weather is sure to come.

Turtles often search for higher ground when a large amount of rain is expected. You will often see them in the road during this period (1 to 2 days before the rain.)

Fireflies in great numbers indicate fair weather.

When hornets build their nests near the ground, expect a cold and early winter.

When cicadas are heard, dry weather will follow, and frost will come in six weeks.

When spiders’ webs in air do fly, the spell will soon be very dry.

Spiders in motion indicate rain.

If you kill a spider indoors, it will bring rain.

If you killed a snake hang it over a fence and it will rain.

When spider-webs are wet with dew that soon dries, expect a fine day.

Spider-webs floating at autumn sunset bring a night frost.

The louder the frogs croak, the more the rain.

Frogs singing in the evening indicates fair weather the next day.

Leeches kept in glass jars are active just before rain.

Hang up a snake-skin and it will bring rain.

RAIN AND CLOUDS

Unusual clearness in the atmosphere, with distant objects seen distinctly, indicates rain.

Red skies at night, Sailor’s delight. Red skies at morning, Sailor take warning.

Evening red and morning gray are sure signs of a fine day. Evening gray and morning red put on your hat or you’ll wet your head.

If it rains before seven, it will clear before eleven.

When the wind blows the leaves on the trees upside down there will be a bad rain.

Rain from the south prevents the drought, but rain from the west is always best.

Anvil-shaped clouds bring on a gale.

A cloud with a round top and flat base carries rainfall on its face.

When small clouds join and thicken, expect rain.

Black clouds in the north in winter indicate approaching snow.

When there is enough blue sky to patch a Dutchman’s breeches, expect clearing weather.

curdle sky will not leave the earth long dry.

If you see clouds going crosswind, there is a storm in the air.

Hen scarts and filly tails make lofty ships wear low sails.

Clouds floating low enough to cast shadows on the ground are usually followed by rain.

Mackerel sky, mackerel sky, never long wet, never long dry.

If three nights dewless there be, ’twill rain, you’re sure to see.

If heavy dew soon dries, expect fine weather; if it lingers on the grass, expect rain in 24 hours.

With dew before midnight, the next day sure will be bright.

If you wet your feet with dew in the morning, you may keep them dry for the rest of the day.
The higher the clouds, the finer the weather.

If you spot wispy, thin clouds up where jet airplanes fly, expect a spell of pleasant weather.

If small puff clouds (cumulus) in the morning or early afternoon have rounded tops and flat bases, if they grow higher than the cloud’s width, then there’s a chance of a thunderstorm forming.

Clear Moon, frost soon.

Ring around the moon and it will rain real soon.

If the night is clear enough to see the Moon and the temperature drops enough, frost will form. Expect a chilly morning!

When clouds appear like towers, the Earth is refreshed by frequent showers.

Rainbow in the morning gives you fair warning.

A rainbow in the morning indicates that a shower is west of us and we will probably get it.

Rain foretold, long last. Short notice, soon will pass.

The gray overcast dominating the horizon means a large area is affected.

If you get caught in a surprise shower, it’s likely to be short-lived.

Red sky at night, sailors delight. Red sky in morning, sailors take warning.

When the moon points up, the weather will be good.

when the moon points down, it will rain.

When a large star, or planet, is near the moon, the weather will be violent.

If the new moon is on Monday, then the weather will be good.

If a new moon occurs on a Saturday, then there will be twenty days of wind and rain.

If a new moon occurs on a Sunday, there will be a flood before the month is over.

The strongest storms and hurricanes are likely to be 1-3 days after a new moon and 3-5 days after a full moon.

Fog and a small moon bring an easterly winds.

A dry moon is far north and soon seen.

If the new moon is far north, it will be cold for two weeks.

If the new moon is far south, it will be warm.

When the moon runs low, expect warm weather.

For more great articles on everything Kentucky and Country Living please go to our Kentucky Farmhouse website. Check out our series on myths, legends, omens, old wives tales and Folklore for other areas of your life.

The Importance Of Sleep When Bugging Out Into The Woods

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If you have gone camping before, you should know by now how hard it is to get a safe, sound sleep. In fact, it’s difficult to get a good night’s sleep during proper camping conditions. Imagine how hard it will be to get some shut-eye during a bug out scenario. I’ve been going camping for … Read more…

The post The Importance Of Sleep When Bugging Out Into The Woods was written by Bob Rodgers and appeared first on Prepper’s Will.

How To Make a Lamp From Natural Materials

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Cattail Fluff

Cattail Fluff

Years ago I was camping next to a lake and as darkness began to fall I discovered that I’d forgotten my flashlight.  I had some firewood cut and ready to go, but knew that it was going to be a long dark night with just the campfire to shed light.

I remembered something I’d read about making a lamp, so I went down to the shore and found a couple of freshwater clam shells.  Now I had my container I needed something to burn.  I’d hiked in early and made breakfast and still had a pan full of congealed bacon grease, which I heated up over the fire.  While it was warming up I tore a thin piece of cloth off my towel and laid it across the bottom of the shell with about an inch hanging out on either side.  When the bacon grease was ready I poured it over the makeshift wick and filled up the clam shell.  I let the wick soak up the grease, which took a few minutes, then lit it.

By Jarhead Survivor, a contributing author SHTFBlog & Survival Cache

Surprise.  It worked!

Cattails down by the pond

Cattails down by the pond

Once I figured that out it was just a matter of finding the right material to make a wick in order for it to be all natural.  Turns out that cattail fluff works awesome for this.  If you live in the country like I do it’s just a matter of driving by the nearest pond (I actually  have one right across the street) and finding the cattail left over from last season.

How to Make Your Lamp

It’s so easy it’s almost embarrassing and I use them out at my tipi all the time now.  I use bacon grease because I usually have some on hand.  You could probably use any kind of fat that’s been rendered down, but bacon is easy.  If you have some bear fat give that a whirl.  In the past I’ve tried different things that didn’t work that well.  My biggest disaster was trying to use actual

Heating the bacon grease

Heating the bacon grease

lantern oil.  When I touched that Betty off it burned way brighter and hotter than I’d anticipated.  Stupid, I know, but at least I was close by the fire pit when I lit it off.  (I’m not crazy!)  It burned hot enough to crack the shell, but it also burned the fuel up fast.  No harm no foul right?

 

Check out this video on how to build the lamp.

 

The good things about this lamp are:  it’s free, it’s easy to make, it actually works pretty good!

The only bad thing about this is that the shell itself makes an unsteady base, so be careful when you set it down so that it doesn’t tip over.

Building A Lamp At Home

How can we apply this to someone living in the city?  Let’s say the power goes out and you’re sitting at home with no batteries for the flashlight.  Never fear, because you can make a lamp similar to this with what you have in the house.  You’ll need some fuel like vegetable oil, and something to put it in.  A tuna fish can will work excellent for this.  Next take a cotton ball or two and there you have it.

Pour the oil in the tuna can then put the cotton ball in for the wick and let it soak up the oil.  Light it and you’ll have a source of light for as long as you have oil.

And there you have it.  The next time you head out in the woods save that bacon grease from breakfast and make yourself a lamp.  Oh sure, you can have your lanterns lit, but to see how our ancestors did it you should this for a night to get a feel for it.  This is about the only way I light my tipi now and it’s pretty cool to see how much light you can get from a few of these simple lamps spread around.

Questions?  Comments?

Sound off below!

-Jarhead Survivor

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Warrior Mentality: Controlled and Purposed Action in a Post Collapse Combat Situation

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This article is not for the faint of heart, but there is an important point to it that needs to be the central focus.  The focus is simple: We are a nation founded by citizen-soldiers who did not win freedom or liberty playing Yahtzee.  They won it by fighting.  When the time comes, the citizens of this country will need to fight again.  If you don’t believe that, then you don’t believe that there is nothing new under the sun…and you don’t believe that what happened before will happen again.

I have written many articles on a wide variety of subjects from woodcutting to weightlifting, from herbal remedies to first aid.  Many times, I wished to go into greater detail regarding subjects of a military nature or pertinent to combat, but I am limited by the amount I can write: books can be written on the subjects, and we’re trying to introduce readers to concepts.  These will get you started…if you do something with them after reading them.

It is what you do with these concepts and articles that will determine how successful they will be in your employ. 

That being said, there will be a time to fight.  I want to emphasize a concept known in the Army as “Violence of Action.”  This covers precise, measured action…not a berserk, uncontrolled frenzy…but a purposed delivering of the most hurtful response you can muster in a home defense.

Your culture…our culture…is based on authoritarian rules of conformity that (at times) instigate complacency during an emergency.  “Wait on the authorities,” or “call the police,” or that ambiguous “someone will take care of it.”  No.  That “someone,” when the SHTF, will be you.  Successful actions depend on a good follow-through.

All of the articles I have written on physical conditioning, weight training and basics on combat both with a weapon and unarmed…. all of these are your “basics” to build off.  I have suggested different works to read to learn about the warrior mentality and ethos.  Why?  Why all of this preparation and development of the warrior mentality?

Because it is the warrior mentality that you will need to make it through, and protect you and yours.

Let’s cover a few concepts that can further your preparations…thoughts to consider.

  1. You are going to be faced with a deliberate decision: to act or not to act when it hits the fan. This may take several forms: escape from a large city or suburb and fleeing to somewhere out of a target zone…with dangers along the way.
  2. In a SHTF situation, the resultant frenzy that begins 24-48 hours later (or even sooner) may force you to fight…and “Marquis of Queensbury Rules” will not be honored by those storming your house and front lawn.
  3. Fight or Flight: you must weigh the threats and see which are viable…that you will have to confront immediately, or that it is best to withdraw from. Discretion is the better part of valor.
  4. Are you “finger-drilling it,” or is it for real? Are you ready…really prepared physically, mentally, and yes, spiritually…to act?  On behalf of you and your family?  There: it’s the next door neighbor trying to jimmy your back door open with a crowbar, and his two sons with rifles behind him.  Are you ready for them?  Or are you going to “offer some of them your canned jellies, preserves, and fruity treats” from your larder?

“Finger Drilling” is a term we had in the Special Forces Medical Course.  One of the instructors was a skinny black guy who had served in Vietnam named Mr. R.V. Johnson.  He was a stickler for taking real pulses and really assessing the patient in a primary survey…not just playing the scenario with taking a “fake” pulse or seeing clear breathing when the patient was told to simulate sonorous breath sounds.  “Finger Drilling” was just going through the motions.

Are you going through the motions, or are you really preparing for what you’ll have to do…fight to protect your home and family?

  1. Take action on your training program…of marksmanship, of hand-to-hand combat, of physical conditioning. Take the action now.  Train with the heavy bag, train with family members.  Resolve yourself to carry out the defense of your family…in a controlled, purposed manner…with the violence of action and follow-through.  No finger drilling.  Resolve yourself to prepare.

Resolve yourself to fight, and when you do?  Resolve yourself to win.  Mentally preparing yourself to face the challenge is just as big a part of it as the actual engagement is.  Review all of your materials, find a good instructor or training partner and get to work.  We’re getting “long in the tooth,” and winter is getting ready to arrive in a short time.  Utilize every task of physical labor to prepare you physically and mentally.  We have a fight coming in the United States.  It won’t be in a foreign land on CNN.  It will be in our backyards and at our front doors.  Now is the time to prepare…so that you can fight that good fight well…and win.

“Winning isn’t everything…it’s the only thing.” – Vince Lombardi

Jeremiah Johnson is the Nom de plume of a retired Green Beret of the United States Army Special Forces (Airborne). Mr. Johnson was a Special Forces Medic, EMT and ACLS-certified, with comprehensive training in wilderness survival, rescue, and patient-extraction. He is a Certified Master Herbalist and a graduate of the Global College of Natural Medicine of Santa Ana, CA. A graduate of the U.S. Army’s survival course of SERE school (Survival Evasion Resistance Escape), Mr. Johnson also successfully completed the Montana Master Food Preserver Course for home-canning, smoking, and dehydrating foods.

Mr. Johnson dries and tinctures a wide variety of medicinal herbs taken by wild crafting and cultivation, in addition to preserving and canning his own food. An expert in land navigation, survival, mountaineering, and parachuting as trained by the United States Army, Mr. Johnson is an ardent advocate for preparedness, self-sufficiency, and long-term disaster sustainability for families. He and his wife survived Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath. Cross-trained as a Special Forces Engineer, he is an expert in supply, logistics, transport, and long-term storage of perishable materials, having incorporated many of these techniques plus some unique innovations in his own homestead.

Mr. Johnson brings practical, tested experience firmly rooted in formal education to his writings and to our team. He and his wife live in a cabin in the mountains of Western Montana with their three cats.

This information has been made available by Ready Nutrition

45 Life Hacks from 100 Years Ago

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Ever heard of Gallaher Cigarettes? Probably not. Back in the day, cards were inserted into cigarette packs to make them stronger, and Gallahar Group would print life hacks on them. Now a century later, people are have taken notice of these hacks and started sharing them on the Internet. A few weeks ago, Preppers Will […]

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How to Preserve Fresh Herbs in Olive Oil

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How to Preserve Fresh Herbs in Olive Oil Hopefully you have a nice plot set aside for growing herbs. Herbs used to be only for culinary use in my kitchen. Once I learned about the healing powers of herbs I also started keeping a variety of herbs that go beyond the frying pan. The fact …

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Prepping Your Bedroom for Winter

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Prepping Your Bedroom for Winter From the bedroom of a modern homesteader, this article comes with advice for preparing for the winter. Now is the time to make these preparations. Not a moment later. If you don’t want to be caught off guard by the cold weather that is coming our way it takes preparations. …

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Floods, and EMP attack? South Korean ‘Preppers’ are Bracing for The Real Thing

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Floods, and EMP attack? South Korean ‘Preppers’ are Bracing for The Real Thing Apparently, Americans aren’t the only ones seeing the light when it comes to both the threat of North Korea and the instability in the world. These are all serious issues that we must take heed to. That said, I didn’t think I …

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